Yikes! I feel like I sat down to read a book and looked up and bam! it was December! How did that happen? I was recently marveling with my husband about how time moved so slowly when we were kids. Back then, July was light years away from December, and the pure anticipation of wanting it so badly seemed to slow its pace even more! When I was a child, I spoke about time like a child, I understood time as a child, I thought about time as a child; but when I became an adult, time sped up!
It took me a long time to figure out how to tell time as a kid. No glowing block numbers for me. My parents were purists. Time had a face. In those long ago days of afro puffs and velour, time had a body and functioning parts: a face and hands. Although its legs were not visible to my young mind, I was aware of how it could stand still and be as quiet as a game of hide and seek, or it could be foot-draggingly slow when demanded upon, as in the case of birthdays or Christmas.
My relationship with time was a little combative. The whole concept of the “one o’clock” spot also being the “five after ” spot when the big hand was one, was puzzling. How could 2 be 10 or 8 be 40?
I’m not sure when I “got” the concept of telling time, but something clicked. Maybe the shiny new ladybug watch whose wings spread to reveal a delicate clock face might have given me the incentive that I needed to to enter the world of time keeping. Maybe I just accepted that a thing can be be two things and that was just the way of the world.
December propels one to think about time. Holiday and family obligations, the year end of things undone or not said. It seems that the pace of living is steroid driven and time begins to feel like a bully… and a little cheap. There simply is not enough time; and when that happens, breathing stops. Not really stopping because that’s whole ‘nother problem but the dance with time can be a little breathtaking.
So as we step into December and the year end, join me as I dance a different dance with time, which is neither miserly or miserable. It just is, it is a tool, a song waiting to be sung with surprises and moments of familiar refrain. Take the gift and enjoy one of our most important playmates — while breathing well.
Enjoy the holidays gently and kindly!