If there’s one thing constant among all of us, it’s the fact that we have the same number of hours in a day. Depending on your geographical location daylight might be longer or shorter but it all adds up to 24 hours. Yet how this time is spent varies.
Take me for example. There are times when I don’t remember where the day went and I just find myself still looking at the same screen come sundown. Yeah, it’s fun at times especially when you stumble upon something funny, an article that makes you think or a video that has meaning. But majority are still junk (maybe it’s just me and my web choices). As the cliché goes, if I knew that it would be my last 24 hours, would I have spent it differently?
My answer is a wholehearted yes, but not in a way I thought I would when I was younger — not in a “grand” manner. I wouldn’t stay up all night nor spend every last cent nor eat until I suffer from food-induced coma nor call everyone and tell them the embarrassing things I wouldn’t under a different circumstance nor even do things I’d love to experience before bidding adieu, like having sex.
Maybe I’d wake up earlier than usual. I’d have my quiet time and read the Word instead of telling myself I’d do it at night (and then be too tired and sleep without even praying). I’d wake up my brother and ask him out to lunch instead of going off on my own. I’d read another page (or ten) from my notes on Negotiable Instruments because it might be the difference between passing and failing a recitation the next day. I won’t miss my mother’s phone call only because I’m watching a Big Bang video and I refuse to pause it.
I was reflecting on myself when it dawned on me that the reason why I cried as hard as I did when two people dear to me died is not the idea that I wouldn’t see them again. It’s the fact that I didn’t when I still had the chance.
Yes, regret may come from big decisions but I think majority stem from small things that pile up, little by little, day by day.
My current favorite Big Bang (yes, KPop) song is “Bad Boy” and it’s about a guy who is aware that he is bad and is apologetic about it but who says that he can’t change because it’s hard. The song resonated with me though not in the context of a boy-girl relationship. It’s applicable to those who love me unconditionally starting with God and my parents.
Same with other people, I have the very bad habit of taking for granted things and people and opportunities, just like the way I spend my 24 hours day in, day out.
To end, here’s something from Fr. Pedro Arrupe, SJ which I think is relate-able even if you profess a different faith (or don’t have one). Because if there’s one thing everyone knows, craves for, or at least is curious about, it’s love.
Nothing is more practical than finding God, than falling in Love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you do with your evenings, how you spend your weekends, what you read, whom you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in Love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.