Life is filled with firsts. The first kiss, first time riding a bike, first date, first time driving a car. It’s really easy to see those firsts, look back on them and remember them with joy, and sometimes pain.
As I get older I realize there is another part of life. The things we never did, and can never do. Time has passed us by and there is no longer a chance for those things to happen.
Our culture has grown insistent with the idea that “it’s never too late.” And, in a way, they are right. People get married and have children later in life. People start new careers, get collage degrees, or write novels well into their 50’s. For a lot of people there is still time. But that isn’t the case for everyone.
I will never have a picture perfect family consisting of husband, wife, and 2.5 kids living in a little house with a white picket fence, a dog, and a garden out back. It just isn’t in the cards. I had my marriage, I had my children, and I love my children dearly, but that idea of a picture perfect home just wasn’t in the cards for me. My children will never have the dad that comes home from work, gives them piggy back rides, and rough houses on the floor. My children are starting to move out.
Realizing certain things are out of reach for you isn’t a bad thing. Maybe at first it was a little sad for me, and I tried really hard to make up for it. To make my own version of the perfect little family in my own home. For a time I even found something really close, but it wasn’t to be.
With realization came acceptance. And finally it was time to make new dreams. New goals. New achievements in life that I could complete.
Life isn’t a video game. You can’t reload your previous save and try to complete that achievement again. Life is a story unfolding before you, and sometimes paths will break off, and sometimes they will end. Sometimes they will be so far out of your reach that you never even saw the glimmer of hope to achieve them. That just means it’s time to find a new path. A new goal. And strive for something more.