Today I read a heart-wrenching story. From an online article, on a local digital newspaper. I couldn’t finish reading it. I closed the page instantly but it took me a while before I did anything else. I stared at the screen until my gaze went out of focus. You know how sometimes what’s going on inside your head is more important than what lies in front of your eyes, so you stop focusing for a while? Yes, I believe it’s the best way I can put it. I stopped seeing with my eyes.
We go about our daily lives like tomorrow is promised. Like we’ll wake up and have the strength to walk and talk and laugh and cry. We do things, feel things, brazenly. We go to sleep with rancour in our hearts because we’ll make it up someday, somehow. And we count the hours we wasted but we shrug them off. Because there’s nothing like tomorrow to start afresh, is there? Then we come upon stories, like this one, of healthy, strong men and women who wake up like every other day to find out that their feet suddenly stop supporting them. And they stumble and cannot get up. Who cannot go to the workplace they might have grumbled so much about anymore. To whom the very act of thinking about the future becomes a painful reminder of what they cannot have. Who see themselves become a burden to the very people they love.
We go about our daily lives like tomorrow is promised. And so we should. But what if tomorrow is different and the promise is just an illusion? Would I still do the things I did today? Would I still say the words I uttered? Would I drift to sleep with anger or sadness still on my mind? Would I waste away the hours on mindless trivialities?
Non exiguum temporis habemus sed multum perdidimus
We don’t have little time. But we do waste most of it.
— Seneca —