stepping outside of time

I've had one ailment after another lately, which has been frustrating since I have so many things to write, but mostly my brain is barely coherent. Here's one bit, at the risk of publishing my worst writing yet:

In 1997, Christopher Reeve directed a short film for HBO called In the Gloaming. It's been several years since I've seen it, but there are a couple scenes that are forever burned on my memory. Robert Sean Leonard plays a young gay man who returns home to his family as he is dying of AIDS. There are exchanges between him and his mother (played by Glenn Close) in which it's as if they are meeting for the first time. He realizes there are so many things he doesn't even know about this woman like her favorite color, favorite ice cream flavor, and so he begins to ask.

There's something about impending death that opens our eyes to things that have been in front of us all the time. What would it be like to live with those eyes before we're dying? I've been thinking about what a different experience life is when you have your attention on the present. It seems most of us have our lives pass us by, unnoticed, while we are planning or anticipating or being completely preoccupied with imaginings of the future or regrets about the past. When I forge a discipline out of being present to this moment, I find God here, and the most delicious morsels life has to offer.

I've alluded here before to my desire to know my grandmother beyond my taken-for-granted experiences of her. We went to the coffee shop together a couple of days ago, and it was an In the Gloaming kind of conversation. I heard about how she experiences the passage of time in this season of her life, and I was able to ask her questions about her marriage, her contemporaries, her regrets and how she wants to be remembered. It was like stepping outside of time. This is living.