the mystery of this fragile and beautiful life is immense.
we never know when we might walk out the door and be hit by a bus. (may her memory be a blessing, my father's first wife.)
we never know when we might walk into a room and lock eyes with the love of our life. (we were 19 and that memory is always, always a blessing)
we never know when what we think is influenza turned pneumonia is actually burkitt's lymphoma. (may his memory be a blessing, my friend's youngest son.)
we never know when after years and years of trying, we might suddenly succeed. (too many friends to list, pregnant after infertility, or choosing to adopt and after waiting and waiting then suddenly getting that email/ phone call that brings their child into their lives.)
we never know if what's been happening to someone is so intense they might feel the need to drive the wrong way up a freeway on ramp with the headlights turned off. (may his memory be a blessing, the son of my MIL's friend.)
and we never know. we just never know. good or bad (thinking makes it so) we never know.
what we have, what we really truly have is this moment, this moment right here. and the mystery.
i can watch movies about walking the camino and read online accounts of people walking it too and think that a seed has been planted for me to one day, maybe make part of that walk myself. but i don't have one day. i have right now. (and my right now does not include walking the camino - that's a deliberate choice.)
we can't do every thing we want. we make choices, moment by moment, about what this moment and the moments to come might hold (going forward). m and i decided to go to thailand this summer (and it was so right and wonderful and those moments - as memories - will stay with our family for a very long time). but what it meant is we didn't go to italy. we didn't go to africa. we didn't go to costa rica. (not yet - all are places we want to go to - and so many more.)
and the next time we have the time and space to go on another long, exotic trip (which may be in another few years), we will pick another destination. but we don't know. we don't know at all. so while we plan and dream, we stay in this moment, as it is. (we have a lot of traveling coming up in the months ahead of us!)
and we take time to dream, to wonder about the mysterious future.
not to lock it in stone (which we can't). not to put it on a pedestal and think "one day i can do what i can't do now (and i'll be happier then)." but to be happy with where we are right now and happy that we can afford to take these long exotic trips every once in awhile (because this is just right, for us, right now).
and to know what we have to do in this moment in order to make that happen - namely, to continue having one car and staying out of debt. both those things have good in-the-moment and long-term value for us. they let us have a life we love now and travel when we can.
there's beauty in this mystery. there's pain. there's love. there's grief beyond grief. and that's the beauty - the raw, unfiltered, know-it-can't-last beauty of it all.