Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Full Moon

It was a full moon last night - with a lunar eclipse to boot. As I left work just after sundown, a beautifully orange ball hung above the Prussian blue skyline, at building height. It was magnificent. There are 13 full moons in a calendar year. This is significant because when you count the amount of full moons left in my life, it seems like such a small, short time. A dozen or so - or a few dozen, it doesn't matter it's still such a small number of full moons remaining.

That's it.

That's so finite.

In the spiritual readings I've done over the past decade or so, I've come across concepts of gratitude and of savouring moments. These readings teach you to savour a moment as if it's the last time you'll do this or see that. I'm not new to the concept of savouring a moment. I am new to the reality of the finite. It's hard to carry on longer-term projects or new ideas when one knows with absolute certainty that one will not be here. There is no replacing the cracked lap-top. There is no purchasing more "things". Why?

I know that life is not guaranteed to anyone. Accidents happen. Illness happens. However most people can count on going through most phases of life: childhood, adolescence, young adulthood, career development and/or family development and adult maturity (you know, the 50s being the new 40!). Anything beyond that can be a little sketchy even in the industrial world with life expectancy reaching well into the 70s. People walk around this planet expecting to go through most of these phases. That's what RRSP's are for, retirement years, grandparent-hood etc. Most people don't have (nor choose) to think about death, burial rights and rituals and endings if they don't want to. Most people can put it off for a long, long time. Imagine being able to assume that you have another 40 years to live. That is a reflection of the term "middle-age". Imagine being able to say with confidence that you are middle-age. Most people say it but forget what that means. It implies that you assume (and even accept) that you're halfway through your life. It assumes that you have xx amount of years left. I say imagine because I acknowledge the reality of uncertainty.

But I also say imagine because most people do this. They imagine their lives during retirement. They save and plan for "the future".

What do you do when you know for certain you will not turn 40? (There is no 2nd opinion, no transplant, no going beyond life expectancy. I've already gone beyond, twice, thrice, 10 times beyond). What do you do when you know that you will see less than 4 dozen full moons left. Forty eight moons - that's not a lot. Well, it's a lot considering that at my last doctor's appointment a few days ago, my Dr. was already measuring for one of the last sign and symptom of the end. Already! My goodness, it was only a month ago that I was told that I had reached the heart failure stage. Only a month ago and already another end sign. Already another end marker. But I am not ready. I still have lots of paintings to create. I want this to slow down. I want to see at least 12 more full moons.

Imagine just 12 more moons, or one more moon. Imagine...

There really isn't any comfort in knowing with certainty that I won't witness many more moons.

There really isn't any more gratitude in witnessing the beauty of the orange ball at this juncture.

There really isn't any more savouring or slowing down to gawk - there really isn't.

I'm not yet evolved or able to accept the finite. Not yet.