Everyone has those moments that seem to have a permanent residence in their memories. Snapshots from days gone by. Mental photographs that remind us of who we are and what we felt at a moment in time where we were shaped, where we were formed. Their first kiss. A cherished moment with a grandmother. That first surge of triumph, of accomplishment. A warm family memory where, for that moment, the universe and everything in it made sense because you felt the purity of love beating inside your chest. Most of these memories are tied to those closest to you. To family and friends, those still here and those who have gone.
There is the rare one though, the rare one of these memories that are caused by a stranger. By another soul that brushed by yours and left a mark forever never to be seen again. Nothing drastic. Nothing life altering, in the grand scheme of things. Nevertheless something resonated on a deeper level that won’t let go. Nothing profound but something permanent.
There once was a man who was worried. He didn’t worry so much about his next meal, or if he had clothes or a roof over his head. No. This worry was a deeper worry. A soulful worry. The man worried he didn’t have enough time. Enough time to spend with those he cared about. That someday all the people he knew and loved would be gone. Consigned to the fate that all things are fated to. He worried that someday would be the last day that he would walk out of his grandparent’s house able to count them amongst the living. And knew someday they would not be counted so. He worried he would never hear his mother’s warm, infections laughter one day. And knew someday it would only be an echo in his memory. He worried about not being able to hug his broad shouldered father. And knew someday there would be no unconditional embrace of love awaiting him. He worried about not being able to see the happy, smiling faces of his two younger, beautiful sisters. And knew someday he would be blinded eternally.
The man was haunted by time’s slow march and, with each tick of the clock, with each fallen grain of sand, with each passing of day into night back into day, the man grew more worried.