Monday, June 13, 2011

Understand Backwards

I ponder the words. Sometimes I look at them from different angles wondering how someone else might read them. Oh, they are fine words. I wish I had written them.

The book is Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. I happened to pick it up while sitting in the car waiting for my granddaughter to come out of school. The book I had in the car the day before had made way into the house to undergo final digestion. Luckily, my friend had given me some of her books that were hitchhiking in the trunk of my car. I'd only read a few pages when I came across the phrase.

You live it forward but understand it backwards.

Perfect words for the way I feel, the way I write. An understanding of something I could not say as well. A definition for growing older.

We all know the saying that when a child becomes a parent, he/she realizes that said parents were really smart. I found an even bigger metamorphosis in my sixties. Clarity seems to have settled in, and I am thrilled to know that I don't know everything. I seem to be philosophising while still needing to look up the spelling of the word. Stress, anger, despair seem to sit on the sidelines because I refuse to accept their interference. I don't need to be the winner of an argument. Heck, I don't need to argue. I can like who I am and not apologize for it. I can wear my flaws. I can just be me. I can understand it backwards.

I wonder if you can play it backwards while you play it forward. I really don't think so. But there again is another point to ponder.

My mother understood this playing it back. I wish we would have know what playing it back was all about when we had her with us. Our conversations with her could have been richer. I feel a bit cheated at missing this depth of communication with those gone now. And, those younger than me don't speak the language.

You live it forward but understand backwards.

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