E = mc 2- Albert Einstein.
This is Year Two, and so this year we are greedily helping ourselves to second helpings. Year two likes to pretend it’s Year one, but it is different in one mammoth way: Year two is better than year One and Year One Knows this. Year Two thinks it has the monopoly on pain but it’s wrong. Year One could show him a thing or two.
We have had the second round of sports days as well as another summer holiday in our lesser state. There has been another Charity run by those at JWT around the Serpentine. Another Easter has come and passed as has Mother’s day. September has come around again for the second time and with it another new class, new teacher. Flynn and Celeste have had their second birthday parties with the absence of a parent. We’ve had another Father’s day -this was was marked by my Friend Jan showing up on my doorstep with a bottle of champagne followed by the words..” to one of the best Dads I know”. I know of one better.
And with each beating second comes distance. This to my astonishment, is unavoidable. Grass will grow, as will children. Seasons will change and it is as those smugites always say- Time waits for no man- or cynical widow it would seem.
Two weeks ago I was at a party. One of the tracks that came on was the very same track that was played/sung by all at my wedding as I walked down the aisle. It was faint at first but if I strained my ears I could just about make out the famous first line:
‘ Wouldn’t it be nice if we were older then we wouldn’t have to wait so long’.
I thought about this line a lot a few years before, once I’d gleaned what was coming our way and the irony wasn’t lost on me. Still there it was a few years later.
When I wrote this blog I wrote it for a plethora of reasons, these too changed over time but one had the hope of helping others in my unfortunate position. Imagining that they were my only audience here I would do this: what I do best. I would steal words ( From Matt Haig) and tell them this.
–People say ‘take it one day at a time’.But, I used to think to myself, that’s alright for them to say. Days were mountains. A week was a trek across the Himalayas. You see, people say that time is relative, but it really bloody is.
Einstein said that the way to understand relativity was to imagine the difference between love and pain. When you’re courting a nice girl, an hour seems like a second. When you sit on a red hot cinder, a second seems like an hour. Every moment was red hot. and the only real thing I wished for, beyond feeling better, was for time to move quicker. I would want 9am to be 10am.
But nothing lasts forever. This pain won’t last. The pain tells you it will last. Pain lies. Ignore it. Pain is a debt paid off with time.
You will one day experience joy that matches this pain. You will cry euphoric tears at The Beach Boys, you will stare down at a baby’s face as she lies asleep in your lap, you will make great friends, you will eat delicious new foods that you haven’t yet tried. There are books you haven’t read yet that will enrich you, films you will watch while eating extra -large buckets of popcorn and you will dance and laugh and have sex and go for runs by the river and have late night conversations and laugh until it hurts. Life is waiting for you. You might be stuck here for a while, but the world isn’t going anywhere. Hang on in there if you can. Life is always worth it.- Matt Haig.
For Jo Pettyan and Cathy Little.