Nine lives to live are still not available in case you were wondering.

If you have heard differently and actually believe that, we have one question for you.

For how long will you be visiting Planet Earth?

That’s what gives life its importance and sense of urgency.

Yes, not aging or living over and over again only happens in the movies.

Please don’t be sad. If you truly had nine lives to live wouldn’t it increase the propensity to procrastinate and lessen the probability that you will put all of your energy into each and every moment as though it may be your last and make them count, second by second.

Perhaps that is what gives this short life it’s power and meaning is that, if we are wise, we must capture the present and seize the moment.

What would it be like to live nine lives or close? A recent film provides us with some clues.

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The Age of Adaline is a 2015 American romantic fantasy film directed by Lee Toland Krieger and written by J. Mills Goodloe and Salvador Paskowitz.

The film stars Blake Lively in the title role, with Michiel Huisman, Kathy Baker, Amanda Crew, Harrison Ford, and Ellen Burstyn in supporting roles.

The delicate story follows Adaline Bowman, a young woman who stops ageing after an accident at the age of 29.

Here is the storyline.

One afternoon in scenic San Francisco Adaline purchases fake IDs at an apartment before returning home to feed her dog. She then goes to work and opens a box of film reels, including one that explains her life.

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She was born on New Year’s Day in 1908, then later married and gave birth to a daughter, only to become a widow after her husband died in a tragic accident. Years later, in 1937, Adaline crashed her car when she swerved into a ravine during a snowstorm and died in the freezing lake nearby, but a lightning strike suddenly revived her.

From that moment on, Adaline’s aging process stays frozen in time.

“Be happy for this moment. This moment is your life.”… Omar Khayyam

Though she can be killed and die, barring that, what effect does this perpetual life experience seem to have on her?

The stellar reviewers at rogerebert.com shed some light. “Adaline spends the rest of her life running from entanglements of every kind. Whenever anyone gets hip to the fact that she never ages and wonders if there’s something odd about that, she slips away in the night and starts over as someone else.”

Is that the life that you would want to live?

Over and over?

We suspect not.

A wonderful article that speaks to the importance of the moment was written by Ms. Elyssa Barbash, Ph.D. at Psychology Today. She enlightens, “Have you ever heard the saying “don’t let the future steal your present?”  This statement is very powerful. Many of us could benefit from following this mantra as it teaches the importance of mindfulness.”

Mindfulness she explains, is the practice of being present in the moment. Depression lives in the past and anxiety resides in the future. Calmness and peace of mind are what you can have in front of you right here in the present.

Well said.

We sense the past and the present can become effective soothing con artists, silently stealing your present away from you, while making you feel that they are doing you a favor.

They are not.

This was the alluring power of the incredible television series Mad Men.

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It wasn’t just about dress up.

The show and characters, brilliantly written, had a way of connecting with you emotionally about the silver linings of a unique time period that will never exist again.

“The power for creating a better future is contained in the present moment: You create a good future by creating a good present.”… Eckhart Tolle

So you see, by staying in the present, you are essentially gluing the building blocks in place to have a better future and an expanding past that is less depressing.

We know a professional woman in our circle who grew up in Daly City, California in the 1970s and 80s.

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After she went away to college, one of the most spiritually healing and emotionally reassuring moments that she lived over and over again was to come home and feel the pleasantness of her youth and re-encounter the powerful experiences therein.

It was almost like she was cheating time. Living nine youthful lives as it were.

One of the experiences she loved most was gazing out of the window of her two story home at night and looking out over her suburban community, seeing the hospital, mountains and freeway in the distance.

It was like a ritual.

As the years went by, at some point she and her sister had to place her last living parent in an assisted living facility and as you might guess, sell the house that she grew up in.

It was one of the most traumatic intersections in her life.

She would never be able to come home again.

What she did learn to do over the years was cherish each moment that she was there. It was like an emotional sanctuary.

She truly learned to live in the moment, savor it, knowing that there was an expiration date approaching, and as much as she wanted to, there was nothing she could do to stop it.

After the house had sold, she drove down Higate Drive for the last time, tears slowing streaming down her face with the acknowledgement that now she will always have to stay in the present.

Regarding this subject another friend reminded us of what she experienced over and over in life that emphasizes the need to stay focused on the present and appreciate every moment.

“Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.”… Oprah Winfrey

We’ll call her Nicole.

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Nicole has traveled a lot and moved at least five times in her adult life because of her job.

There are many benefits to this lifestyle where you grow and experience different things but the sadder aspect of this is that you meet so many interesting people, sometimes romantically, share this intense experience and then…….

Never see them again. Ever.

It is a consistent pattern.

You promise to stay in touch but realistically once whatever you have in common ends, in her case the common job or neighborhood, your association typically ends.

Sometimes 10 to 20 years later you bump in to one another, are older, temporarily sift back into the past but soon realize that what you once shared is permanently over and you can’t go back.

After a few “it’s really good to see you again” expressions, you both know it’s time to move on and come back to the present, to the people who, even if not as special as those of the past, are still the most important people in your life now due to what you have in common for the moment and what you are trying to accomplish together.

This happens so often at high school reunions.

After the passing of time, you see your first intense love as a teenager. At the time, you saw no end to your passionate relationship.

But it did end.

Now you are most likely married, raising children, paying mortgages, going on vacations, to weddings and funerals with someone else. The person that is relevant in your present, even if the intensity and passion is not the same as your young love, is the most important person right here and now.

In very practical terms, they are the person you need in the present.

It serves as a powerful reminder of your mortality and the passing of time.

We don’t have nine lives.

We only have the present.

If we are wise, we should stay very focused and available in it.

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Opening photo Lionsgate photo credit 

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/trauma-and-hope/201801/mindfulness-and-being-present-in-the-moment

https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/moment 

https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/the-age-of-adaline-2015

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Age_of_Adaline