The Truth About Time
By Laura Mills
I admit it: I’m in denial. It should not, cannot possibly be mid-January already. Wasn’t it just Christmas? Some of my decorations are still up. And did I seriously just hear a commercial about taxes? What about my to-do items leftover from 2014…organizing the claim for my car repairs, balancing my checkbook, getting the carpets cleaned, filing away those miscellaneous papers? I refuse, absolutely, to believe we’re halfway through January already….
But I’ve said it before, and I know it to be true now: the calendar on my desk (and the one on my computer, and the one on my phone) doesn’t lie. It is mid-January. And I am overwhelmed. This isn’t a new feeling; actually, I’ve felt overwhelmed with things to do quite often before. After all, the harsh reality of time is that it’s finite—as I’ve been trying to teach my four-year-old lately, we only have so much time and we must make choices as to how we use it (as in, “…you can’t watch TV and play Elsa/Anna and also take your bath all before bedtime.”). I do try to prioritize and focus on what needs to be done NOW at any given moment, but I can only sustain that directed purposefulness so long before my overwhelm returns.
Thankfully, a remedy does exist. Not the kind of remedy that will clean my house, file my papers and pay my bills for me, but rather a remedy that brings me away from overwhelm into peace in spite of my lingering un-accomplished tasks. It’s my memory. I remember I’m a competent, strong person on an incredible journey; I remember that the journey will go on even if I don’t accomplish everything on time; and I remember that while the journey is messy and unpredictable, I always have my breath and my heart to guide me. In fact, to my breath and my heart, time is irrelevant—no matter what’s going on at any given moment I can always breathe, I can always love.
And most of the time, no matter what the calendar says, that’s really only all I need.