My mother is learning yoga and one day recently she told her instructor that she cannot walk like she used to. She has slowed down and has no work at all. The young instructor said that was the rule of life, the law (niyama) which God has made. Each stage in life is different, and it is not possible for us to do the same things in the same ways throughout life. How true her words were. Wise words from the young.
My mind goes back to November last year. I was with my daughter for 2 ½ months. Our granddaughter was born on November 10th. Now she has completed six months. We are seeing changes in her everyday. She rolls across the floor and is also moving forwards. This first year in life is such a fascinating time. Our grandson will soon be five. He is changing every day but those changes are not so obvious. The other day my mother told a relative that she has to use a walking stick now. He said this was another stage in life. He believed childhood was the best time. So true. But it is a tragic truth of life that countless children do not have a childhood at all.
Life moves on, and so much keeps changing. Many a time we are not even aware of the changes. Maybe we change with the changes, and we accept life as it comes. My father-in-law is 93 now. He was always been a very active person, always on the move. He has lived all his life in a village and is an agriculturist. He worked hard along with the farmworkers and spent all his working life standing and moving about in the fields and areca gardens never sitting down to rest. But that stage of life is now in the past. Life has slowed down a lot for him. Looking at him I wonder “does he wish for those days to come back?” A few years ago he was with us for about three weeks. Every afternoon we used to sit in the front porch and talk about the old days. I wrote everything down and prepared a series of Facebook posts. Many of our relatives enjoyed his reminiscences. He said life has changed a lot, people in his times never imagined it would change so much. But he never hankered after those days. Some people do.
One of our acquaintances lives in the past when she lived in another city. She is always lamenting about the passing away of those days. I get the feeling living in the past has made it very difficult for her to be in the present. It seems so tragic.
Every stage in life is very different and there are so many changes; some of them take us by surprise; others, we willingly leave behind.
“Every stage in life
Takes us forward everyday
Till we reach the end.
We can live in the present
Or worry about the past.”