Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Got a minute?

I have a birthday coming up and with each passing year, I find my self getting stingier and stingier with my time.
 
Y'all know how it is.
 
It really has nothing to do with age, but more with perspective.
 
When I was young, I believed myself invincible with nothing but time to blow through. Now time blows through me.
 
The thing is, I really don't have any less time now than I did in my twenties. It was running through my fingers like sand through an hourglass at the same pace it is now. The difference is at 20, 30, heck even 40, I didn't have the sense God gave a goose to realize I'm only promised a certain number of days, each containing the same 24 hours.  I was in too big of a hurry to realize regardless of my age, it's the same amount...no more...no less. What I know now that I didn't know then is I have to focus on today and stop fretting tomorrow. This day, today, is what I've been given. Today is my promise and tomorrow is only a possibility. It's all in God's perfect timing...not mine.
 
Are y'all picking up what I'm laying down?
 
A girl of 23 never stops to think it could be over in a heartbeat...but it could.
 
A woman of 63 knows a heartbeat is God's promise for just that day.
 
A day is a gift, the best kind of gift, and one of incredible value.  It arrives with an invisible eraser, allowing us to change what we don't like and keep what we do.  And no matter how hard we try, it can't be hoarded.  Try as I might, I can't squirrel it away in a safe deposit box and pull it out for rainy days.  Once it's gone...it's gone.  It has to be emptied of all contents by the "best used by" date before it expires at midnight.  As much I would like to, it can't be frozen like last night's chicken. No returns, no exchanges.
 
It's mine to use as I see fit. It can be frittered away or it can be judiciously guarded. It can and will be used to take care of business, but happily, it can be used for play. The important thing is to use every single tick of the little hand, giving it a sound wringing at the end of the day to get the last drop.
 
It can be shared or given away, but never borrowed nor stolen.  Sharing our time with those we love or even those in need only increases its value, but giving it away can oftentimes cut it short.  Time is too valuable to throw away, much less give away. It needs to be spent on something or someone worthy of it.  And if it's our business time being asked for, we need to remember it can't be replaced and charge accordingly...even if it's friends and family. Sadly, even bills have to be paid in a timely manner. Hard as it may be, we have to regard our time as the precious commodity it is.
 
Squirrel Alert!
I hope y'all are still reading along. I know I can be a bit of a gasbag and your time is valuable, but I really do have a caboose to this train of thought.
 
I have a confession to make.  I hate a calendar. It serves as a reminder of how few days there are in a year. When I see penciled in events, I cringe simply because as I get older, I'm jealous of my time. I want to spend it doing things that make me happy and not going to the dentist or other equally mundane things.  But that's the sad part of time. So much of it has to be spent taking care of our lives, we are left with so little time for actually living. So I decided this year, I would not be a slave to a calendar. I'll start each day taking care of what needs to be taken care of and spend the rest of the day in pursuit of what makes me happy with my Cat Daddy topping the to-do list!
(Insert wink and a smirk here!)
 
I simply refuse to let a calendar on my desk dictate my time.
 
This past Sunday was Mother's Day.  I told my children I didn't need Hallmark to tell me they loved me or because the calendar said so in red.  I told them to stay home with their families. All I asked for was a quick phone call simply because I love the sound of their voices as much as I love (maybe more) my own. I wanted Jenn to get to enjoy breakfast in bed served by her children. I wanted Joey to smother Misty with love as he looked at Graycie. They deserve to be pampered if for no other reasons, the gifts of the Bella Baby and Grayzilla...my legacy. The last thing I wanted was for them to feel guilty or worry about hurting my feelings.
 
 
 
I'm not selfless and sure hope I'm not giving that impression. My motives were less dramatic, but a result of my days as a young mother. I was expected by my own mother (God love her, but Helen Marie could be a pill at times!) to drag myself out of bed and take her out for breakfast on Mother's Day...and no was never an option. Mother being Mother, she would not hold still for excuses...short of labor pains. But even then she'd ask how far apart the pains were to see if there was time for a quick trip to the Champagne breakfast brunch served at the hospital. I never had the luxury of being waited on hand and foot for a day and I believe every mother of a young child deserves it. Not to mention the joy it brings to the kids to spoil their moms...and make a mess while making a memory! Why would I want to cheat those kiddos out of a blessing? I love them and their parents too much for that.

 
 
See it's like this. I know they love me. I see it in their faces and I feel it in their touch all year long. They honor me in the way they are raising their children. They give to me constantly in the smallest and biggest of ways...and not just on that one day a year. I ask you now...isn't that how it's supposed to be?
 
Their lives are just as busy as mine so we share time together whenever and wherever we can. Time should never, ever, ever come with a guilt trip attached. I'm just that vain y'all. I want my kids to spend time with me because they want to and not because some FTD florist or Russel Stover's commercial says they have to.
 
Remember earlier how I said time can't be squirrelled away in a safe deposit box?  It can't, but the memories we make while spending time wisely can. They will last a lifetime and I pray be handed down to generations to come.

I seem to spend a lot of my time talking about time, but y'all know I'm just the typist. I write what He tells me to write and if it seems repetitous, I've got me a hunch. He wants to make one thing perfectly clear. He's the owner of our time clock and we shouldn't make the mistake of thinking otherwise.  
 
Now...I don't know about y'all, but at the end of her day (in the far, far future), this old gal doesn't want to be caught with any time left on her hands. I fully well expect to cram as much as I can into every single minute of every single day, and as I exit left, laugh myself silly all the way to the memory bank.
 
And that my friends, will be time well spent.
 
 
 

10 comments:

donna baker said...

It is amazing how time flies, especially when you get older. There is a song I heard Annie Lenox sing beautifully (but can't find it anywhere) called Live Well The Days. I've been flat on my back for days and you can count the wasted time flying by. Wish we could slow it down. Einstein said time slows down in hyperspace.

Kelley said...

Hi!!!! I soooo relate to this post (except our mothers were different :-) and will be sharing it with my daughters. Indeed, I want to finish well, having used wisely all the grains in that hour glass (LIFE glass) The Giver of Life have me. All the talents and gifts used for His glory alone.

My prayer is that I can model that for my own children and those young women I mentor as their Titus 2 example. We will reap what we sow.

Hugs and happy week,
Kelley~

Olive said...

You are wise so very wise.

Vintage Home said...

say it sista! What a smart lady & mother you are!
God is in charge and we need to listen! Thank you!

Debbie Phillips said...

Well said....love it! I think I will keep it for future reminders....I let my days go by too fast and not doing things I love or with the people that I love. My husband could use the reminder too!! (he is a workaholic). Thank you!

holli said...

beautiful and well written post! It is funny how much more valuable time is now as we age than when we were in our 20's. I've lost too many friends at a very young age to know that every day is not promised and to truly appreciate each moment. I want to wish you a very very happy birthday Mama Deb! I love you to pieces and am so blessed to be able to count you as a dear friend that God put in my path.

Kathie Truitt said...

Girl, you took the words right outta my mouth. This year I threw away every invitation that came my way. And when I move to Texas I refuse to get involved in social obligations that distract me from God and my family.

French Vanilla said...

Hi Deb. Since I don't have FB, or a blog I don't read blogs often. So happy to find you today. You are so well-spoken. I love to read what you put to screen. It is so fitting!! Ahh, time. Flits away if we let it. Missing you n Cat Man. Hi to all TX Junkers!!

Bliss said...

So, even though I completely understand and agree about the getting older and time thing, I can't help but wonder if this means you're planning on spending more time on conjugal visits?

Bohemian said...

I'm late visiting this profound Post of yours... and I mirror those sentiments at this Season of my Life as well. I think that has been the most difficult part of being a Full Time Caregiver now, that Time seems to slip away doing what HAS to be done for those I'm Caregiver of... and leaving precious little Time for the Living part as it trickles away thru the hourglass. Therefore I do attempt to set aside some ME TIME so that it feels more like Living than merely Existing and filling the role of Caregiving for those who need me in the Family. Though it is surely Time well spent Ministering to Loved Ones who aren't capable of Caring for themselves, this ain't no Dress Rehersal for Yours Truly and there is still so much I Dream of accomplishing before my Ticket is Punched and Time has run out...

Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian