His eyes twinkle with love, excitement and his ears fall back out of pure joy. He runs in circles, slower than before and playfully looks up, white opaque cataracts staring at my face. Growing old has never been more painful. Suddenly, I don’t want to be a day older, I don’t want the clock to move along. I want time to stand still, absolutely still while I soak up the moment and swallow my tears.
It is a wonder I never realized the true power of time before. Maybe it was the excellent parenting that shielded my tween and adolescent mind from the eventual confrontation with the reality of aging. It has been an experience, a journey and a privilege. I share my deepest fears with no-one and bear the smaller heartbreaks and focus on the present.
This ability to absolutely live in the moment is rather new to me. My eyes and brain used to drift away, full of dreams, expectations or laden with memories and dart in various directions, time and places. They do transcend the barriers of time and dive into the trove of happy memories now and then, but I bring it back to the now, the future with its bleak uncertainty and certain sadness, the past re-kindling moments of joy I can never replicate. The present is all I have, the smallest interval of time that stands relatively still where I can feel happiness and unbroken joy.
Maybe I am scared of losing him or maybe I am no longer as brave and unfettered in planning the future because of the realities that ground me. But living in the moment has given me clarity of thought and a meditative space to live in, free from the burdens or sadness of thought. I move forward in these tiny pockets of the present, slowly stringing them along to make memories. If this sounds deep and philosophical, it is because only now, I understand the power of now.