I am in my mid 50’s, so you may have to adjust a few dates to apply to you, but I think it equally applies to most everyone.  It might be that getting older gives you more time and motivation to think about the end of your life.  I don’t spend all my time shuttling kids around or attending their concerts.  On a side note, I find being an empty nester GREAT!  I have started to think about retirement (sounds great to me!) and the $ needed for retirement. I did have to go figure out about how much longer I have to live. So I found an online lifetime expectancy tool .

It said I had a 75% chance I will live to 80 (1 year more than my father) and a 25% chance of living to 96. But overall it said on average I will live to be 88. Knowing I have 25-30 years does make me look back and realize that isn’t much time.

I listened to a podcast that was more of like eavesdropping on 2 people having a conversation.  The topic turned to the topic of death and specifically on how much time we have before death changes how we look at death and how we live.

They discussed what they would do different if you knew you had a day, a week, a month, a year, a decade, etc.  They agreed that a decade or more probably doesn’t change what we will do in the near future (other than maybe taking a look at our life insurance policy).  And no surprise that on the other end of the scale it would change what we do in the next few days.  The shorter the timeframe, the more effort we usually put into living life to its fullest.  How many college papers assigned weeks in advance were turned in with only minutes left on the clock?

But it started me thinking of how the Mormon view of eternity and being sealed to our spouse plays into this equation [1].  Does the fact that we have “eternity” to work our marriage relationship affect how much effort we put in resolving issues TODAY?

I remember reading many years ago on a blog someone mentioned that she heard a bunch of sisters in her ward in a RS activity just really talking down about their husbands.  The one sister listening finally said, “I am so sorry that you have to live with your husband for eternity as it sounds really bad.”  That was probably a combination of being a bit rude and a bit passive/aggressive (or is it aggressive/passive in this case?)

I have heard some talk about with temple marriages that “you just have to hang on in this life then everything is going to be celestial.”  That does seem to me that at least for some people the prospect of living with someone eternally can effect a relationship.  With that logic it would seem that working on the relationship is second behind “making sure we both make it to the celestial kingdom.”  First and foremost one has to make it to the celestial kingdom. Just make it across that finish line and everything else is small change – including liking being around your spouse.

So do you think that the prospect of eternity changes how we might otherwise work on our here and now relationships?

 [1] Even before I got married I already came to the conclusion that sealings were mainly about spouses being sealed.  Otherwise if you come from a huge Mormon family, you would be in one humongous group. To me that mentally devolved into “heaven” as we would be sealed one way or another to most everyone.  I want to be with my wife – the only person I have “picked” to be in my family.  I do want the kids and grand-kids to come (I hope my mansion has enough room for them).  I wonder if the rule of thumb about “Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days” applies in the afterlife?