Thursday, January 26, 2012

I'll Do It My Way (Frank Sinatra style)

When my daughter was about four years old, we took her to see the movie Harry and the Hendersons. We thought we had chosen a wonderful family movie that she would remember for years to come. Oh, she remembered it alright. She sobbed uncontrollably all the way home. Her father and I lived with the guilt for years afterwards. I guess we just didn’t realize what a sensitive little girl we had produced. Of course, she got it from her mother.

I used to love going to the movies. Both my exes were movie lovers as well, so a once a week movie date was the norm for us. Nowadays, it is a treat to catch a movie while still showing in the big screen. At ten dollars a ticket, and don’t even talk about possible popcorn or a drink, it simply makes more sense to wait until the movie makes it to Redbox rental status.
Tonight, I was ready for a treat.  I had seen the trailers for Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. I typically like anything starring Tom Hanks. The only other 9/11 movie I remember is Reign Over Me and it affected me deeply. Billy Joel never gave me the 9/11 song I believe he owed me, owed us. So it was time for a dose of reality. I went for it, by myself, which turned out to be a smart decision.

Before the movie even started, there were the trailers for other movies. I love watching the trailers. It provides me a list of movies I want to see.  I was crying before I got through the trailers, mostly by watching those for The Vow and Big Miracle. I had allotted myself five Kleenex for tonight’s feature. I was through two of them before the trailers ended.
I won’t be a spoiler, but the movie focuses on a family affected by the 9/11 tragedy and yes, someone died. The story that unfolds is beautifully told, poignant and delivers its message loud and clear – time waits for no one. When a life is ripped away from us, we are left to pick up the pieces, attempt to understand why it happened and, most profoundly, to live with the regrets of all we didn’t accomplish.

As I inch ever closer to the golden years, I am reminded daily of my mortality. I have lost friends, people my own age, who left behind unmet goals and unrealized dreams. I am at a crossroads in my own life, and the light has been red for too long.  I am doing my best to have the patience that Mother of the Sky, my favorite astrologer, keeps telling me I need. There are goals on the table, and strategic plans to achieve them, but some stumbling blocks are perched in the path and their removal is out of my control.
I don’t want to have regrets. I don’t want a hope chest full of goals that never came to fruition. I don’t want unsaid words roaming in my head. I don’t want to star in the movie called The Greatest Love Story Never Told. Perhaps the time to reshuffle priorities has come. Anyone else in?


  1. I re-shuffled mine seven years ago when I went back to college to become a teacher. It was the second best thing I have ever done (the first was meeting and marrying my lovely wife - Julie). I heartily recommend it.

  2. OK Roger, you convinced me. I want to meet and marry your lovely wife Julie, lol.