What natural resource do we waste more than time, that we can never replenish, gain back, or find a substitute for?
Or maybe time is a sort of institution. A thing we are chained to, slave to, even if we don't recognize it. We are indentured to our workday, to the 24 hours we have to do everything that our life calls for and still find time to handle the things that unexpectedly arrive. How many times have we all said, "There aren't enough hours in a day."
But is there enough time ever, really?
I can't recall how many times I have looked back over my day, over my month or my year, and been exactly opposite of where I calculated I would end up. Things change. Conflicts arise. That simple thing you thought you could handle in "no time flat" became a complex issue anchored by sub-problems you have to solve before eventually solving the issue you set out to eradicate to begin with.
It is our way, to be careless with our time. We even tell our kids, "Don't stress. You have time to figure it out." I can't tell you how many times when I've, in the middle of a quarter life crisis, bemoaned the pitiful state my life is in, and someone sought to quell my growing hysteria by saying, "You have plenty of time."
I am 24 years old. I have time. I have time to (not) get married. I have time to decide if I will
Until we don't have it anymore.
What do you do when all you have left is all the time you used to have?
If you're lucky, you spend that time in a house in New Orleans, surrounded by your family and your friends that are like family. Hopefully you spend it surrounded by laughter and spirited voices recalling happy memories. You can only hope that there will be an endless parade of friends and neighbors from all over 7th Ward, walking through the open and unlocked door to offer a story and a smile, a comforting touch to those you are leaving behind. Your eyes may not be open, but maybe with every inhale you will smell the aromas of the cuisine of the city you love and maybe it will bring to mind something that makes you smile. If you're lucky, you will spend your end of time under a barrage off kisses and short hugs and whispered I love you's in your ear. If you are lucky, everyone that comes to see you, to love on you, to pay their respects for the life you lived will see you not as the besieged vessel that cancer has stolen, but rather as the friend, the jokester, the playboy, the drinking buddy, the kind smile and easy manner that you were. You will be not a memory, but a presence, a warm blanket to those that wait for your illusioned time to pass. You won't be alone, a prisoner to the ticks of the clock, but rather completely engulfed by multitudes, by admiration and peace, by love.
If you're lucky.
So tell me, what are you doing to be lucky?