You only live twice

#wjrpics Fotografie Wim Rozenberg

There’s still so much that I want to do. Please don’t tell me that I won’t be able to. That my dreams will go up in virtual smoke.

Please don’t tell me that, Life.

You won’t have it all

Still, there does come a moment when you realise that you won’t be able to do all of the things you yearned to. There are actually many such moments. The notable ones are matters of life and death. Such as the moment our daughter’s life ended hours before it would have begun. A crack beyond repair. Your life ends, along with hers.


But somehow you carry on regardless. Albeit with a crack; a crack between that first life when she wasn’t yet born and your second one. A crack that cannot be glued back together. Not with all the gold paint in the world.

Your second life is good nonetheless. Good enough that your dreams reignite.
Such as your dream of living to the ripe old age of one hundred. Fit as a fiddle to boot. Although, Parkinson’s has thrown a spanner in the works of that particular dream. In fact, your Parkinson’s-free life was already over before you reached half of that century.
You can repair those cracks between your life without parkinson’’s and with parkinson’s quite well by the way. Tenderly glue them back together with a touch of your own gold paint and a touch of gold paint adjusted by loving hands around you.
And there you are; hovering between your first and second lives, cracks and all. Between what was and what is. And you dream of what’s still to come, in that second life of the future. There’s still so much you want to do!

Strength of loving hands

Then, suddenly you realise that your first and second lives share a common strength. The common strength of loving hands that protect, care, work and play and  glue things together with goldpaint.

And Life…she smiles at me

And Life smiles as she tells me to pull myself together. Because I still have so much to do, because so much is still going to happen. Because those loving hands are going to grasp me by the hand and never let go. With that same playful smile, Life asks me how I came up with the title: ‘You only live twice’. I tell her about the cracks, and about everything before, when my life was still perfectly fine, I tell her about the ‘it’s now or never feeling’ you get whenever you fear Parkinson’s is set on stealing your future and about how you don’t want to miss one single thing. And, and, and…

“Come here, says Life. ‘You only live twice’ might have a ring of truth about it. But if you spend your entire time dwelling on those cracks, the future will pass you by. I thought you still had so much to do and so many dreams to fulfil? So, come on then! What are you waiting for?”

Mariette Robijn, The Netherlands, July 22, 2017