How Much Life Do We Have Left?

Ever since I noticed that I have fewer years left to live than I’ve lived already, I’ve developed a consoling theory about how much life really remains.

It’s probably not an original idea, but it feels original because … well, I know of no other way around the brevity of our lives.

Here’s how it works.

Most of us, by the time we’ve reached my age, have lived fairly busy lives of work and family, spending whole years focused on the future and what it will bring, looking forward someday to years of ease and comfort that eluded us in the moments as they flew by. We’ve been occupied, in other words, with most of the normal stresses and anxieties of a conscientious and responsible life.

If for all those years we’ve been alive already, we count only those moments during which we were conscious of the beauty and grace of this totally unearned gift of life as the moments during which we were truly alive, then … we may have as many or more such moments left to us in whatever time remains than we had in all the years before.

Maybe we’ll have more moments of joy and beauty in the months or years remaining than we had in all the decades before.

Somehow, we have to cultivate more gratitude.

Sounds easy, right?

It’s not.

The habit of distraction is strong.

Could this be the answer ...

... to this?

It’s a good theory, but I’d welcome some tips on how to ¬†improve the practice!

How to stay conscious of the beauty of each moment as it flies?

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2 Responses to “How Much Life Do We Have Left?”
  1. depelton says:

    Less TV, more walks in the woods, or lazy afternoons at the beach.

  2. Dixie Redfearn says:

    Great post! As I get ready to turn 62 — with a husband who is 70 — I think about this a lot. It’s all about experiences at this point. Forget material stuff. Go out and DO something!

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