I Shall Not Pass This Way Again



5 years ago my husband took me to Ireland for our 10 year anniversary. It was just as beautiful as we dreamed it would be...rolling green hills, rocky crags, castles around every corner...it was magical. And even though we talked about returning, I think we both suspected we would not pass this way again. So we drove wide-eyed and awed and soaked up as much of that land as we could.


I feel the same way about the various seasons of my life. I can feel time passing through my body - it's one of my super powers (and may also make me a not-so-fun person to live with at times). But for better or worse, I understand, perhaps more than most, that we shall not pass this way again. The kids will never be this age again. We will never get this summer to do-over. We will not always live next to these neighbors or be able to hug these relatives or be presented with these specific career opportunities...Seasons change and with the closing of one chapter comes another...each one filled with its own joys and sorrows - its own unique struggles and triumphs. We don't need to mourn the fact that time passes, but we should be awake to that reality so that we can be fully awake for this never-coming-back moment.


I once saw a post-it note stuck next to the kitchen sink of a friend with multiple young children. It said, "Be where you are" and it struck me as very profound. Be where you are, friends. Live well in this moment for we shall not pass this way again.


“I shall pass this way but once; any good that I can do or any kindness I can show to any human being;

let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.”

Etienne de Grellet QUAKER MISSIONARY



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