Both of my kids grew another year older this week. It amazes me that once you have kids time seems to go by so much faster. When I was younger I remember my mom telling me that the older you get the faster time goes by. I didn’t believe her because I always believed time was a measured thing. Measured by seconds, minutes, hours, and so on. But sometimes I wonder if those do not really mean anything.
They say time flies when you are having fun and when you are bored time drags on. So what if time is really measured by your experiences. That’s how it feels to me now that I am a parent. As a kid I used to measure time by counting down the days until my birthday, Christmas, school breaks, and by by events. I would measure time by months and weeks. Now, every second counts. Since I had my daughter four years ago, I have known that I don’t know how much time I have with them. I know that anything can happen in the blink of an eye, faster than a second.
The older they get, it seems like somewhere time got put in fast-forward. Like there must be a few missing weeks. Time is a funny thing. No one knows how much of it is allotted to them. We have tried to harness it with numbers and science but , it is still near impossible to measure. We try to stretch it out but no matter what we do, we always will have the same amount and it isn’t even our choice on how much we get.
We spend so much time working, rushing, and doing so many things that in the long run won’t matter. When I look back on my fondest of memories, they seem like such small moments. The 15 minutes at the alter with my husband. the 30 seconds I had to say goodbye as they rushed my grandfather to surgery, the first 5 minutes after my son was born before they rushed him to NICU, the 20 minutes here and there I can get my kids to sit still to cuddle on the couch, and a few 10 or 15 minute conversations I have had with my mother. Those are the kinds of moments that matter. Not the 8 hours you spend at work. Not the 3 hours spent on housework. Not the 6-8 hours of sleep you get at night.
I guess what I am saying is, pay attention to the far too few precious moments because when you run out of time those are the ones you will remember. Time is the most precious gift given to us. Make sure you aren’t wasting it. You only get one shot and there are no do overs.