Minutes and hours, days and weeks, months and years; as children the passage of time was irrelevant to us. We had no concept of time at all. Holiday time lasted what felt like forever. Springtime, Summer, Autumn and Winter ran into each other and we were unaware of the seasonal changes around us. We played, having fun, laughing loud and were moving along in our own little bubble. While at school we would remember those older than us turning the old age of 18, even 16 and we thought how old they were, imagine that! Now as adults we maybe still wish we had that bubble to escape into and hide away from the fact that despite attempting to control so much in life, we have no control over time. Time passes faster with every given day and we cannot get a hold of it to slow it down.In contrast to our wishes to have it slow down, a lot of us when at work wish our time away. We wish it was home time, we wish it was Friday, we wish it was holiday time and forever we find ourselves counting down and wishing for the time to pass quicker. We are never quite happy, are we?! Even now when not currently at work, but looking after our children at home I sometimes can join in with this mentality. After only one day of school drop offs, back to home, school collections, back to home, outside school activities, and then perhaps a GB night also I can find the number of times strapping three children in and out of seats to amount to over 20 times and I too very easily find myself wishing it were the end of the day. If we are honest, at times I think we are all guilty of doing so.Yet as adults and parents we are now learning for ourselves how we want life to move more slowly, for it to be less hectic so that we can get composure and our breath back to be able to cherish and enjoy every single moment. With our three little ones all under 5, life has become so much busier. We see each of them growing up so quickly and time passing even faster since each one has arrived. It is not only our children that we see growing older it is our parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends around us. When we have long enough to stand still at a mirror and see our own reflection, we too can see how we are not getting any younger. Growing old is part of life, it is what happens; we are not going to live forever. Despite letting our imagination escape onto the cinematic sets of ‘Forever Young’, or the back to front aging of ‘Benjamin Button’ or becoming a Cullen in ‘Twilight’, delaying or stopping our aging process is not possible. With each new day that we are granted and blessed with, we have to be thankful and make the most of it.
Making plans to visit relatives and host gatherings for everyone to get together has become more difficult with the wider family circle having grown in size and the busyness of life. Unfortunately more often than not these days, irrespective of every best effort made, they do not always materialise. It is with every hope that there will always be the next time to meet and make memories, but unfortunately that does not always happen. Over the last few years I have been shocked and saddened by the sudden passing of loved ones and it has left me questioning, “I should have gone to see them more”, “If only I could have given the time to sit down and talk”, and “If only I had made more time”. Not wanting to have regrets and wish that I had gone ahead and made the effort to give someone more of my time I plan to spend less time talking about doing these things and put it into action by just doing it!
“Time is your most precious gift because you only have a set amount of it. You can make more money, but you can’t make more time. When you give someone your time, you are giving them a portion of your life that you’ll never get back. Your time is your life. That is why the greatest gift you can give someone is your time.
It is not enough to just say relationships are important; we must prove it by investing time in them. Words alone are worthless. “My children, our love should not be just words and talk; it must be true love, which shows itself in action.” Relationships take time and effort, and the best way to spell love is “T-I-M-E.”
― Rick Warren, The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here for?
Reading over this quote by Rick Warren reminds me about how precious the gift of time is, giving me a newfound purpose for everyday living and puts life into perspective. Along with our parents, siblings and wider family unit, our children and just as importantly our spouse deserves our time and love. We can all try harder to do more for our relationships and families; to talk, listen and learn more, and invest more time and energy. Time is precious, time is everything. It is important that we do not take our lives for granted, but to take it one day at a time, to live every moment, laugh every day, and love beyond words.On this day of Remembrance, we will remember.
“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.”
– Robert Laurence Binyon, For The Fallen