We were laying about like sloths on Saturday night watching something or other on TV, when a wedding scene flickered onto the screen. The divorced parents of the bride and groom were making awkward small talk when one ex asked the other, "Are you happy?"
The response was, "Of course I'm happy - we're at our son's wedding."
And that's the point at which my mind, as it so often does these days, wandered off on a little journey of its own. It went to the land of "there'll be no wedding for your son" very rapidly, before finally coming to rest in "you might not live to see your grandchildren" town.
Seriously. It's theoretically quite possible that I'll die before my grandchildren are born. If I got pregnant right now I wouldn't give birth until after my 37th birthday. If we started adoption proceedings right this second it would be longer than that. If our child ends up on the same timeline as we are for starting a family, I'd be in my mid 70s before its child was born.
I'm not planning on dying at 74, I'm just saying it's not beyond the realm of possibility to think that I won't last that long.
And even if I do, I'll be old. Way old. The grandparents of my generation were young when we were born (relatively speaking) and in many cases lived well into our adulthood. I lost my last living grandparent when I was 34, just a few months before giving birth to Thomas.
For my grandchild to have the same experience, I would have to live to be 108.
Call me pessimistic, but I have my doubts about my ability to manage that feat. I already feel old in body and spirit. I'm not sure if I can handle another 72 years.
This is the way it is these days. People are staying in school longer and working hard at building their careers, and as a result they're getting married and having children much later than they used to. I'm not saying education and careers are a bad thing. Not at all. I'm merely pointing out that in our quest to achieve personal greatness and self fulfillment before our time to do so runs out, we may have overlooked something very important.
That is, of course, that time will run out on something else.
We are older mothers - wiser maybe, and with much more life experience to pass on to our children - but we won't be here for them for as long as many of our own mothers will be here for us. We'll be great-grandparent age when our first grandchildren are born. We won't dance at their weddings. And we won't have a chance in hell of being in one of those once-popular four-generation photo shoots.
I'm not trying to start a debate and I'm not being judgmental - honest. I did it all too. I went to University and started a career and always felt young enough to conquer the world. Mortality, scrambled eggs and the rapid approach of 40 were a million miles away.
Until suddenly they weren't.
I don't regret the experiences I had and the choices I made before I married My Beloved at 32. I loved going to school and my early working years were fun and exciting. I grew into the person I am today because of the life I chose.
I just wish I wasn't so old.