It’s that time again
Her laugh, his bad jokes, their love
In another realm
In the movie Back to the Future, your life line is constructed of the indiviudal choices you make, the decision points that determine what comes next, where you wake up years later. It’s a tidy movie concept, that somehow the choices that you’ve made don’t take you into a completely different outcome, an entirely unanticipated result that only looks reasonable and logical when you look back. The same people are with you, the familiar everyday world even when everyone’s roles are different and all you want is to go back to the reality that you know and are responsible for rescuing. Strong music, an incredible car, fantastic plot twists, upbeat banter, and exuberant Michael J. Fox and passionate Christopher Lloyd provide an incredible story. I love the movie — and am obsessed with its tidy, well-packaged explanation of how time flows.
This week, a friend is mourning the death of her mother and her sister, as wrenching transformational as anything you can imagine. Another friend is giving loving presence, laughter, and memories shared over relaxed meals with a man who is dying. People I love are walking profoundly harrowing life lines right now.
Right now, we could all use a little time travel adventure, to a real or imagined past time when we felt alive, grounded, and fully here with our loved ones and our own favorite version of who we are. Our lives could be seen within a version of time composed of an infinite number of side-by-side individual strands— that there is no right or wrong time, no past or future, only an infinity of nows.
In that infinity of nows, time strands intersect, entwine, enrich our present lifetimes. No one is ever truly gone. We can remember, we can anticipate, and we can know in our most rock-solid centers that only love is real. With that knowing, we can rub the dog’s head, chat with the cashier, and hold the door for another, being fully here and fully present for one another, doing our best to be our own favorite version of who we are.