My granddaughter came into this world this week; pulled from the security of her mothers’ womb, where it’s dark and warm and safe, she now faces a world of noise, and light, and vulnerability. The path ahead is long and fraught with obstacles. No longer will she simply receive nutrition without asking, or enjoy the freedom of relieving herself whenever the urge strikes (at least not until she’s over 75) From this day on she is accountable to the world and must conform to the rules of society.
She will now have to ‘ask’ for food or a diaper change, and she will come to rely on hugs and cuddling to provide her with comfort and security. She will experiment every day of her life with new sounds, sights, and feelings, and she will have to reason with how and where to apply these new findings. She starts with a clean slate; everything is new and exciting. She knows no fear or anger or hostility; such emotions are acquired through life experience only, and one can only hope life will be kind to this innocent child. I envy her this beginning full of ‘firsts’….adventure awaits, and the road will only be as long as is needed to satisfy her life’s mission. Where will life take her?
There’s a very, very elderly gentleman in my neighbourhood who walks his grandsons dog, everyday, while the boy is in school, because he wants to break up the monotony of the dogs (and his) day. He is hunched and unsteady in his stride; hobbling down the road in any weather, clinging to the leash, and there are days I wonder who’s walking who. With each day I see a decline in his demeanour; a slower gait, a more pronounced hunch, and yet there he is, every day performing this labour of love for an innocent creature. He has lived a long and, one hopes, full life.
Today as I watch him walk by I can’t help but think of the disparity of this mans presence in this world to that of my new granddaughter. He, so worn and weathered and experienced; full of knowledge and opinions, and so very old. And she, so new and eager; naïve and innocent, so very young.
She is just starting her life, and he is in the final phase of his, and both have yet to face more challenges, because there is no life without toil. He must reconcile with all that he has learned in his time here, and she will now face a lifetime of choices, because we all have a mission in life (we’re not just here filling time) and I admire them both for choosing to experience life because as souls of the universe we all make the conscious decision to do so, and that takes courage.
For the old man I wish acceptance and gratitude for all he experienced in his life. May he find peace and tranquility in his exit from this world. And for my little girl, I wish a lifetime of laughter, and tears, and hugs – may you experience profoundly, everything life has to offer, the good and bad, the happy and sad, because all of these will fashion the loving human being you are destined to become.
Life is good – live it fully and love it madly.