How Long is Forever?

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Time is an interesting concept, isn’t it?  Forever doesn’t really exist, well, not in our lifetimes in our current bodies in our present experience…and yet we make plans and dreams  to last “forever”.   Forever also does not mean the same thing to everyone.  You can’t really measure Forever.

Something I tell couples who are getting ready to marry or commit is that “forever is an excruciatingly long time when you are unhappy, and not nearly long enough when in Love”.  Let’s not make a plan on forever.  Let’s make a plan that includes a purposeful today, a stronger tomorrow and the right tools to navigate the growth, challenges and changes that are simply a part of life.  Why get all caught up in the concept of Forever when you can create a better Right Now that will naturally flow into a better Tomorrow (and so on).  Commitment is best done in the moment, in every choice we make, in everything we do; right now.  Saying “forever” isn’t nearly as effective or powerful as living present in your commitment in the now.

The concept of time (and the elusive “forever”) changes as you experience more of it.  At five years old, waiting for Christmas or a birthday can seem to take Forever.  At 16 years old, the wait for the magical age of 18 can seem unfairly long.  At 20, the idea of spending another four to eight years in school (for those doctoral hopefuls) can feel like eternity.  For a young couple in love, Forever can feel too short.  For a couple struggling to hold onto love, Forever can feel hopeless.  For someone who has lost their love, the idea of going on without them can make Forever crushingly heavy.   For someone getting a shot in the arm, 30 seconds can feel too long.  For a couple engaged in a kiss, time flies too fast.  For an elderly couple seeing their grandchildren grow, the previous concept of Forever seems a paradox of gratitude of fullness and a bitter cruelty as they realize what they will miss as their curtain comes to a close.  Whether you  are looking backwards or forwards, time changes with your experience.  There is now.  There are memories of past time.  There is hope for future time.

Now is all there really is.  Let’s use it to get closer, stronger, happier so that if the gift of the future is granted to us, we will get to experience it together in a way better than we can even imagine today.