JEFF PEARLMAN

Coming October 2022: "The Last Folk Hero: The Life and Myth of Bo Jackson"

Celebrating time

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My son is 3 1/3-years old. A couple of days ago we learned that one of his little friends is sick. Very sick.

I can’t get this one out of my head, and that’s probably a good thing. Because too often I bemoan the passing of time as some sort of curse. I look at my children—I also have a 6-year-old daughter—and mourn their fleeting youth. I think about Casey being halfway to 12, 1/3 of the way to 18, 1/4 to 24 … and it numbs my head. Where do the days and weeks and years go?

Then someone gets sick. A little boy who did nothing to earn such a fate.

And I wake up.

The passing of time shouldn’t be damned. It should be celebrated. Watching my kids grow and learn and mature—it’s blissful. I want to see them Bar/Bat Mitzvahed, married, with children. But more than that, I just want to be a part of their lives as they evolve. To waste my time crying over the fact that they’ll never again be infants … sooooo stupid.

Life is precious and imperfect. Things happen that make no sense, and things happen that seem so incredibly blessed and miraculous. I don’t understand it, save for the fact that the only order is disorder, and the only sense is nonsense. When people ask for a meaning of it all … well, I think I have the answer, and it’s that there is no universal answer. We all have to discover our own meanings, and run with them.

For me, it’s a little bit writing, a little bit running. But mainly it’s about loving my family, and being there for them throughout.

It won’t last forever. It can’t last forever. But, at its best, it’s unambiguously amazing.

I want to embrace that.