My Dad’s heart is getting weak and at 87 he has lived a full life. My son is very close to my dad and so when I saw my dad going down hill, I contacted him so that he could know what was happening. He lives 700 miles away and has not seen my dad for about 18 months. He and his family moved away 5 years ago and have really only been back once as a family to visit. We have been up there many times, because it is easier for us to get away than for them to come down. When my son realized how weak my dad was, they made a quick decision to come for a visit. My parents live a few doors down from us, so staying with us was good because he could just walk down to visit them whenever he could.
It was wonderful to see them and it really gave my mom and dad an emotional lift when they came. When my son and his family arrived, it brought back so many memories for them when they lived here. Their wedding, the birth of their daughter, the house they lived in and now rent and places they used to go frequently. My 10-year-old grand-daughter started crying when she saw her old room. Reconnecting with friends and family was wonderful for them. I could tell that it made them homesick. Most of their family live in this area and not having us around where they now live is hard.
So many changes in the last 5 years. Their children are older, parents and grand parents getting older and adjusting to not being so young anymore; the reality of life and we must keep moving forward. They cannot move back as much as we all want them here. Life does not always give us what we want and embracing the reality of the future is sometimes difficult.
It was so hard to see them leave. We had such a wonderful time together for 2 days., but life goes on and every time we part I struggle with sadness and I have to focus on the positive. We have so much and we can stay in contact with them through the social media and cell phones. Twenty years ago we would be much more disconnected.
I do not want to live in the past. I want to be thankful for everything I have today and I want to embrace the future with a positive attitude even when my heart is heavy. Having a family is so valuable and accepting what life brings us and adjusting to changes is vital in our own personal well being. Having an attitude of graditude and focusing on what we do have and not what we do not have is the only positive way to live.
Balancing the past with the present and embracing the future is a fine line. Some days it is easy and some days it is hard,but time always marches on. It stops for no one. I strive to live for today and embrace tomorrow when it comes and cherish the wonderful memories of the past.
Vickie Parker, LMFT
vickiemft.com online counseling