Finite

How much time we have on earth. A finite, measured length of time.

I once muttered loud enough for a classmate (who happened to be as old as me…so, old) to hear me. This man was the only other “mature” adult in the room.  Even the professor was younger than he and I. Remainder of the class was made up of twenty-somethings. Hence, the designation, “mature.” Just audible on my part this man picked up my statement, “I don’t have much time. I have to get my education done asap. I don’t have much time.” I repeated myself. “Not like the rest of these students, they have a lot of time ahead.”

The man’s reply took me by surprise. “How do you know that any of these younger students will be around tomorrow?” They do not necessarily have more time ahead of them than you.” “How do you know that any one of these people will outlive you?”

Well, it is just the order of things. But, it was a sobering thought he left me with. How do I know with any certainty? I don’t. I do know that life is finite and offers no guarantees. My mom is 90. She has outlived many of her contemporaries. She never sat in a college lecture hall listening to the statement issued by my friend. She has been known to wonder how it is she got this far. She has seen two sisters pass on. And friends…

It remains a mystery just who will go first. The 21 year-old sitting behind me. The man across from me. The professor. Will I even outlive my mom? A finite number of days.

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