In three words I can sum up everything I have learned about life: It goes on. — Robert Frost
This week, my entire family fell like dominoes. My daughter and I started feeling sick, aches, sniffles and fever persisted for a few days for both of us. While we were recovering, my mom and my husband succumbed to the same virus. At one point, each one of us, laid in bed, unable to move because we were too sick to do anything.
The entire house was quiet. But the noise of the outside world creeped on. I heard cars moving about on the streets, people slamming doors, and the cries of children coming home from school. Noticing the forced quiet in our house, while contrasting it with the noise from outside, I was struck by this single thought: life goes on. Our cars stayed in the garage, the front door didn’t open or close, and our home phone probably rang once during the week. But the rest of the world, it was moving on, with or without us.
My daughter missed four days of school, but the classroom still carried on without her. The same moms who climbed in and out of there cars waved to each other, even though I wasn’t there. Runners lined the street in the morning jogging on the gravel, even though I wasn’t there to run behind them.
I realize what we were feeling was temporary. We eventually would be able to participate in our normal life soon. But it really made me think how all of us carry on, despite what happens in and around and to us.
I thought of Robert Frost and why he articulated the words, that “it goes on.” In his life, he was plagued by extreme grief and loss.When Frost was only eleven, he lost his father and his family had only eight dollars to their name. Years later, at age twenty-six, he lost his mother to cancer. His sister also was committed to a mental hospital where he witnessed her death at a young age. Robert Frost and his wife Elinor endured tragic deaths of their children: his son Elliot died of cholera at age eight; his daughter Carol committed suicide at age thirty-eight; and his daughters Marjorie and Elinor both died young. Later in life, his wife was stricken with breast cancer and also died.
Whether trivial or tragic, there are no exceptions. Life goes on.
Do you sometimes wonder how people carry on despite what they experience? How does life go on for you? Why do you believe life goes on?