We can’t go back to yesterday — ever.
Sometimes when I look at pictures or relive memories from different times in my life, I cannot believe they are over.
Like poof. In a flash.
While we are busy living life, many times we don’t even realize that in the blink of an eye, that period of time is gone.
It doesn’t feel like it will ever end at the time — but it does. And all of a sudden today becomes yesterday and yesterday becomes last week and last week becomes last year and so forth.
I remember feeling completely overwhelmed with the births of all three of my children. Each one had colic for over a year, and by the time the last one was born, she too was colicky — only this time, I had two others to tend to and all were under six years old.
As I sat up in the wee hours of 1, 2, 4, 5 a.m., I used to think to myself, “OMG, how will I ever get through this?”
And just like that — poof! They are now 19, 16 and 13, and it’s passed.
And it passed fast; now, looking back, much faster than I could ever have imagined.
And I did get through it. And while I can remember feeling that my exhaustion and irritability would never end, now I wonder how my kids grew up so fast.
You know, here’s the thing. Time has this freaky little way of creeping up on you.
But, nonetheless, it’s always passing by.
Now when I see the pictures of my three little babies, all so young and small, I realize that even in the hardest of times — all things pass.
I think about past relationships and how, while in them, we never think they will end, whether it’s partners or friendships, husbands or wives, etc.
Or maybe we do, but we’re still living in the moment — miserable or happy.
We look back at pictures or see a memento from that time, and it immediately brings us back to experiencing exactly what we were feeling at that very minute.
Some like to refer to this as nostalgia. I like to call it an emotional moment down Memory Lane.
Sometimes when this happens to me, I think of how much I’ve changed since then, and it reinforces how important it is to appreciate where I am today, at this very moment in my life.
Two weeks ago, I celebrated my youngest daughter’s bat-mitzvah. As I scrolled through old photos for her montage, I sat there crying, realizing the significant changes in the people who have surrounded us over the last 13 years — my children, my parents, the passing of my grandmother, the ending of certain relationships and friendships in my life.
It hit me like a brick and it hurt.
I used to dream about my future and what tomorrow would look like. I don’t do that anymore because I’ve come to realize that while I was dreaming about my tomorrows, I didn’t take into account the reality of them.
I’m talking about the big picture — all the way around.
While I was always looking forward to my own personal goals or this or that, I wasn’t picturing the other collateral effects that were also included in this future progression — like parents aging and getting very sick, children going off to school, relatives passing away, people getting divorced, etc.
All of it.
The whole bag of chips.
So for today, I no longer dream of the future.
This doesn’t mean that I don’t have my own personal picture of what I want tomorrow to look like, because I do. It just means that I’ve realized that while I might attain all these dreams, there may be other things around me that will also be different as time passes — and not necessarily different in a good way.
One thing I’ve definitely learned with time is not to wallow in the past.
While there are many occasions where I deeply miss something or someone from my yesterdays, I try to quickly move past that feeling as fast as possible to focus on my today.
It’s yesterday’s news. It happened and none of us can rewrite history — ever — no matter how much we would like to.
So for today, my advice is to live in the moment and appreciate the now, because the truth is, everything about today will become a memory before you know it.
And try — and I mean try your best — to make it a good one.