Procrastination – it sits in a box on each of our shelves waiting to be taken out and dusted off. Some of us use it so much it never gets a chance to get dusty. We think we have plenty of time to make up our minds – plenty of time to act or do the things we should. Time is not an endless commodity – at some point the hourglass is empty, the time has gone and in many cases the chance to make a decision has gone with it – it is out of our hands now.
Someone told me once that not making a decision is really a decision itself. I suppose I can see that in ways but I don’t think in every situation is that way. There are things I mean to do, mean to say, mean to write but I keep thinking I should wait till I’m richer, wiser, and have more time. It isn’t that I don’t intend to do them or to make the effort, nor is it that the decision is too hard to make…I have reasons – good reasons I usually think – for putting them off. If I had done everything the moment I thought about doing it, well my world would be in utter chaos. But time marches on, you know?
It’s amazing the way memories of someone come flooding back when that person dies. Things that should have been said, should have been done will forever be left the way they are now because time has run out. Now that it has, I feel like I should have seen it coming – perhaps I did. Six to eight weeks ago, I found out my sister wasn’t doing well and her time might be eminent. Let me say, this was also told to me twice before over the past three years so it was easy to believe I still had more time. When someone calls “wolf” enough times, my reaction tends to slow down…as I’m sure it probably does most.
My sister is the first person we have lost in our family in over twenty years – since we lost Mom. Have always thought our family was blessed that way because my aunt lost four of her children before she died. Twenty plus years…who can blame me for thinking it wouldn’t happen as fast as it did? It isn’t just Linda I have been lax with. I wrote two of my other sister’s letters weeks ago and haven’t gotten either mailed yet.
I have to print them off and my printer is funky so I’ve put it on the back burner. Plus I didn’t have stamps so got them about a week ago. Now the news in the letter is old and useless – so why send them?
Weighing our mortality is the gift the dead leave for us. We think about what we have done along with all we hope yet to do and realize time is running out. Tomorrow is promised to no one. Don’t put off doing what you know in your heart you should because you may never get another chance. There may never be a tomorrow.
I did get to tell my sister the things I wanted to before she died. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life – talking to her when she knew she was going to die. There doesn’t seem to be any right words to say when the person is staring death in the face. I didn’t want to dredge up things that made no difference now or were simply to assuage my own guilt. I tried to be a good sister, I did ~ I failed miserably but I did try.
That failure, I’m afraid, will be with me the rest of my life. Hopefully it will serve as a reminder to me that sometimes there are no second chances. That hugs, kisses, love, apologies, and good intentions need to be acted on before it is too late to do so. No more can I see someone hurting or needing help and think that I have plenty of time to help so there is no rush. We need to live each day as if it is our last. My son and I text each other just about every day simply to say “I love you.” Such a simple thing – so why did it take me so long to say it to my sister?