My son’s former carpool driver died last month and we just knew about it recently. Then, while skimming through several social media posts, we learned about the sudden passing of another close friend from our Australia days, last week in his area of work in Laguna.
This double-whammy, saddening as it was, just re-emphasized in us the reality that no matter how well we negotiate our way towards any goal, and how we aim at being content or happy, we are nonetheless still powerless to control whatever curved ball life throws our way. Their deaths likewise serve as constant reminders that we are merely temporary residents on this planet.
Not all transitions are necessarily tragic and unhappy however. Along with the sadness come turning points that inspire promise and usher in hope for new beginnings.
Our son, that fresh college graduate of two moons ago had finally landed a job, one to his own liking and passion. His mom and I, had at first wanted to influence and veer him toward several job options, but thought better of it in the end. Do what you love and love what you do, still ruled the day I guess, and he has been really good at fighting his own battles anyway.
Since day one, when he first confidently walked inside the gates of pre-school (insisting that I not enter, lest his class reads it as a weakness), up till our last march along with his nanay at his college graduation, a crunched-up ball of years lay scattered between; with both significant and mundane stages that the three of us equally-share and revere as precious transitions.
And surely, the same applies with everyone. Our journeys may all digress, with separate routes being influenced by how we individually perceive abstracts like success, failure, happiness and how we interpret what is a full life. Unique as we all are, in the end, everyone arrives at our different versions of a final station.
“The years just float by, like a broken-down dam,” bluesy Bonnie Raitt once sang, and indeed, we may all be in awe or even in tears, as the world turns. As we grow with age and experience, it does seem clearer that the world revolves impassively in spite of our presence, and that is simply the way it is. We will forever be window sitters, looking on as it parades us by.