Today will matter thirty years from now.
I know this.
Even though by then, the good Lord willing, I’ll be pushing 80.
All I did today was spend time with a friend. Maggie. Of course Husband and her Husband were there as well. And their little man Liam who they are building their world around. Today we went to help stain shelves we had built together a week or two ago. But in helping her build her own space this past year I have had some reflective moments. I realized so much has been built, and torn down, that I had a bit of a future moment I had to share with her. And it makes me sad.
I shared with her how years ago there were things I did. Things I enjoyed. And people I enjoyed being with. I told her how I still think about those things and how I miss the moments lived and the people who lived them with me who are no longer around. And how we don’t see the changes coming. Even though we know they are around the corner. We don’t acknowledge the things that are no longer because other things take their place and we sometimes don’t even see the shifts in our lives.
But I see the ones behind me. I see turns, detours and places where I completely stepped off of my life track.
I realized that there are things today that will no longer be.
The time I spent with Maggie today was building and shaping her life. I realized that some day, years from now, someone else will tear down those shelves. Not knowing, or caring, of the moments put in to putting them up. When Maggie and I went to Menards and bought the wood and ate two bags of chocolate truffles. Beginning a new addiction. You would think I’d be speaking of the truffles, but that’s kind of expected. But there is another addiction; building things that we didn’t think we could build. And now that we know we can we want to build everything. Who ever tears down those shelves won’t know of the fun the four of us had the day we built them. The day we put them up, tried to move them and they all came crashing down. The shelves may hear the echo of the cussing and laughing. But the hands tearing them down will not. Nor will those hands of the future hear the echo of my friend and I sharing histories today while we stained. Those future hands won’t know how we were being oh so very careful to not get anything on the walls. At first. And by the time we finished the shelves we really didn’t care about the splotches that dotted the freshly painted walls. We were just glad to be done. And two more bags of truffles were done as well.
The hands that tear down those shelves won’t care that today I told her I know her future will not always have us in it. There will be a day when she remembers fondly this day. And remembers the time we spent together. The things we built. The stories we shared. I told her I do things now, that I know in the future, will not be the same. And I have a different appreciation now of the people in my life. And the things we do. I know that because of our age difference, she will be here some day, and I won’t be.
Not to be melancholy. Though it’s hard to not be when I write that and actually see it.
I know I do things today that I won’t be doing in the future. Much like the things I use to do, the people I use to have in my life, who are no longer in my life. I miss them. And I often think that I wish I had realized how much those times meant. Then.
I know it won’t always be the same.
There is one difference now though. Today, I have a little better understanding and awareness of the importance of today. This moment. These people. My friends. My family. What I have matters.
Even though I know it will change.
I don’t want to be thirty years down the road from now thinking back on today and wishing I had known, now, how much today mattered. I do know. Every day.