“What would I do? What on earth would I do with just one more moment?”
I sat and I thought, as I thought and I pondered, while I pondered as I wondered what on earth I would do. I had heard the question, but I can’t remember where I heard it, or read it from. The question was simple, yet it opened up a warehouse full of possibilities.
The question was, “What would you like to see, if you were given another few moments to see?” It was a simple query, but as things tend to do, it started my mind to churn a little, and chug along. I instantly thought of a hundred things that I would like to see, just one more time. I thought about my childhood, my adulthood, my fatherhood, my grandfatherhood, my husbandhood, and yes, I am aware that husbandhood and grandfatherhood probably aren’t real words, but they seem to suit me just fine at this particular time, so, there! ppbbbrrllttt: P
The first thing I thought of was my wife. I would love to be able to look into her eyes one more time, those same eyes that hypnotized me and helped me figure out where my future was, those same eyes that melted the inner core of my heart, those same eyes that took me by the hand and released me from my anxious ways, those same eyes that seemed to help me be sure of something, to be sure of one thing, more than I had ever been sure of anything before. The true meaning of love.
I thought some more, and thought of my son. I would love to be able to gaze at his face one more time, to be able to look at him and notice the man that is standing in front of me. I can hear it in his voice these days, but I would love to see it in his eyes as well. He is a part of me, and I, of him, and over the years, we have grown a bond between us that is hard to define. It is the timeless union between father and son that usually withstands the tests of any time. I can hear it and feel it, but I would love to just see it, one more time. I would love to be able to look him in the eye, as I tell him how proud of him I am.
I then snapped into a vision that I have stored in my mind of my grandson, Jack. I quickly flipped through the pages of his first four years. I remember all the pictures that I took of him, the thousands of images that I have been fortunate enough to catalogue in my mind. I flip through them all, and I can see him grow, so quickly and so much closer to my soul. I would love to be able to look at a six year old version of him, to update my scrap book and perhaps, if I could see him at this age, if for just a minute, I might be able to picture him even older than he is right now. I have tried to imagine what he would look like as a ten year old, or an eighteen year old, but I can’t get past a few of his images as a four year old. Oh of course, I can make stuff up, as I have done for everyone new that I have met these past two plus years, but it is no where near the same.
I’ll still form images of folks though, and hold them tight, for it’s all I have to work with. It’s actually fun, listening to someone’s vocal characteristics, then coming up with a mental image of them. It’s as though I am building my own library, and the funny thing is, once I catalogue their mental image, every time I see them again, I always remember them as I first was able to imagine them.
The next thing that I would like to be able to see, one more time, is my folks, my mom and dad. When I think of them now, I tend to run through my stored files, and quite often, I will remember them as they looked, through my life, from the time when I was a kid, to the last time I saw them back in 2010. All the files are there, all the stored memories are there, all of the wonderful smiles, sneers, scrunched noses, winks, scowls, they’re all there, and they’re all mine. I would though, still love to be able to look them both in the eyes, one more time, just before I hug the snot out of them.
I would take full advantage of a few moments of sight to stroll around our yard one more time, and take all the sights and sounds in. I would love to be able to see the area where the barn used to be, and how much work my wife has put in to turning the area into a wonderful addition of our back lawn. She tries to describe it to me, but I just can’t picture it like I would like to. I would love to be able to see the flowers and bushes and shrubs and spruces and pines and all of the wonderful contours of our property. A friend of ours walked out back, through the yard one day last summer, as he was trying to get his little pooch to go pee. He told his wife that our back yard, as he turned the corner, looked like Disney World to him. It was full of character, and it caught him by surprise. I still hold all of those characteristics in my head, but I would love to be able to see how they have changed in two plus years.
Of course, I would give my right arm to be able to see the smiling faces of my siblings once more, and their families. So many memories swirling around that fill me up with miles and miles of family. So many sights to put along side the sounds.
I have seen so much through my life. I have been blessed with vision for half a century. Fifty years of memories that I will hold tightly, for the rest of my life. I have so many amazing images to recall, so many incredible instances to recollect, so many wonderful times to flip through. All of the colors, all of the contours, the shapes, the lights, the sunsets, the sunrises, the high tides, the smiles, the frowns, the laughing faces, the tear filled eyes, the rolling country sides, the majestic mountains, the rugged shores, the freshly tilled gardens, the yellows of the school buses, the oranges of the fall pumpkins, the blues of the sky, the blackness of a moonless night, all of it, I remember.
If I had one more chance to see, I would take it all in. I would remember everything, and leave nothing behind. No vision unturned, no sight unseen, no images left untouched. I would grab as much of it as I could.
I would also like to try and see the faces of the new folks in my life. I would like to be able to put their voices to a face. Of course, it would have to replace the ones that I have created already, but it still would be wonderful to see them, for the first time, and for the last time
The visions that hold my future lie within the visions of my past. All that I remember, all that I will never forget, all that I have seen will help me to take on whatever comes my way. The courage in the days to come, the hope that lies in tomorrow’s dreams, the faith that a new sun will rise tomorrow, it all starts with a memory of how it was, how it looked, how it found its way into who I was, and who I am.
If I could see for just one more day, one more hour, one more minute or second, I would remember it all, and be grateful, but first, I reflect on my gratitude for my new and amazing two years worth of sightless visions and lightless memories that I have already stored, safely away.