George Harrison "All Things Must Pass" (1970)
All Things Must Pass
Sharon and I were in the same graduating class in high school. I knew of her, but I didn't know her. She was a small frail looking girl who wore glasses. She was smart and studious. Though not one of the popular kids, she had lots of friends and belonged to many school clubs. Not like me. I was more of a loner.
After graduation, like a good many of our classmates, we both began attending the university in the city near where we lived. There was an hourly bus run from our town that passed by the university. That was usually my mode of transportation to school each day. I began to notice that Sharon likewise rode the bus.
Since we were frequently on the same morning bus to school and she wasn't sitting with anyone, I would sometimes sit with her and we got to know each other somewhat. It was mostly small chat, but we'd talk about many different things. I started to think of Sharon as my friend.
When I didn't see her for a week or so I didn't think too much about it. We were friends, but not overly close. I didn't even know her phone number. Then I happened to be reading the local paper and ran across a small notice on the obituary page. Apparently Sharon had passed away in her sleep. The family found her lifeless in her bed. I was stunned and saddened.
My thoughts went back to the last time we had spoken together. We were in the bus station waiting for the bus to begin boarding. We were engaged in our usual small talk and somehow the conversation came around to clothes and shopping. I asked if she were planning to buy clothes for the spring which was soon to come. Her reply to me was, "Who knows? Spring may not come this year".
We both laughed at that and I saw a sparkle in her eyes that I can never forget. I didn't think much of it at the time, but in retrospect I realize how prescient her comment had been. Was she telling me something that she knew was coming?
Many years have now passed--over forty. I've been married a few times, had kids, and now grandkids. Sharon's younger brother later became a good friend of mine. He didn't even know that Sharon and I had known each other. One of Sharon's sisters married one of my longtime friends. I've seen the passing of many other friends. Life goes on--and on. And yet it all goes far too quickly.
Often I forget about the preciousness of my time. All things pass away and no matter how hard we try we can't hold on to it all. Pieces--a photo, a scrap of paper, a fading memory. And one day we too will not see the next spring to come.
How many friends have you lost over time? Has anyone you have known ever made an eerie prediction that you didn't realize until after it happened? Do you think there are certain people who enter your life for the sole purpose of teaching you a deep meaningful lesson?