My mother has been the bedrock of the family and all of us, sons and daughters, although all over 50, still see my mum in that way. The thought of her not being there one day became very real. I told myself that I would have to accept the fact that one day she wouldn't be there. Of course I had theoretically thought about it, but this time the thoughts were more than theory. It really shook me.
This made me think of mortality in general..... the fact that my mother would almost definitely not be there when my grandson goes to college, .....that I would not be there most probably to see K's grandchildren. That reminded me of the beautiful words of Kahlil Gibran from his poem on children:
"You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams."
The poem goes on to say
'For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.'
The memory of th poem eased my mind and I returned to my favourite position-- 'I'll cross that bridge when I come to it.'