Sometimes I think about what I will remember most—or care about—when I am old.
I am pretty certain I won’t remember much about FaceBook. I know I won’t think about email or text messages, or as much as I love gadgets, my mobile phone.
I won’t care what operating system my computer is running, if we even use computers at that point, but I might care if I backed it up, although it probably will not matter unless I print everything. I know I certainly won’t want to be holding a Kindle, or a laptop or have a Bluetooth headset on my ear.
I am also certain that I won’t think about all the frozen dinners I have eaten, organic or not, that Sienfeld re-run where they cut up candy bars with a knife and fork—although that was pretty funny—or that great deal I wrangled on a flat screen TV.
Here is what I am pretty sure I will think about.
I will think about my family, both immediate and extended, first and foremost, and wondering how they are, wherever they are, and I will want to be with them as much as possible.
I will think about Victoria and Dylan, and how much I love them, and how much of a gift it is to have them in my life. To see another human being that is genetically half you and half your wife look into your eyes and say I love you is truly euphoric.
I will remember that time my father threw me in the air when I was three to the music of Shostakovich, and I will think about my mother painting on the third floor of the house I grew up in, while I stood by her side finger painting. I will remember molding clay side my side with my father in his studio while he was making his sculptures. I will think about the rice crispy treats with little cinnamon candies my grandmother made me and my brother and sent in care packages while we were growing up.
I will also think about my work and how much I accomplished, the experiences I have had as a composer and performer—both good and bad—and what I am leaving behind. I will certainly hope that my music doesn’t die with me. I want to think that by the end of my life, I will have contributed to the world in a positive way.
I will think about the walks I took in Central Park, the mountains I climbed in the Adarondacks and Colorado, homemade chocolate chip cookies and those times I stayed up all night with Dan, one of my best friends while growing up. I will think about friends, present and past. I will think about a few exquisite meals I had in a few fancy vegan restaurants, and my favorite pieces of music and visual art.
I will think about everything in my life that was intensely personal and full of love. I will also regret all that I wanted to do, but didn’t.
It is interesting how some of what we do now will not matter that much when we look back, and how important it is to live each day as fully as possible, take chances, and be with the people we care about, in the flesh.