On The Clock.
Daylight Savings Time.
This is me at 4:30pm on the Monday afterward. (To clarify – this is my “I’m seriously running behind” face; not gas).
Baby boy finally drifting off for a nap, just in time for me to start getting plans in order for supper, which tonight means – anything with chicken, since today is a day after the sell-by day I noticed this morning.
Meanwhile, older brother finally gave into his nap, which from the video monitor included removing all bedding from his toddler bunk and falling asleep legs crossed, head in lap.
The laundry is going – check
Lunch got fed (while out for play date) – check, check
Yet… no shower, no sweeping – toys on the floor.
Waiting. Waiting on Daddy to be home any minute and asking myself where the many minutes from today have gone.
That is the thing about time. It keeps ticking right on along, and sometimes, it can leave you with even less of it than you had the week before.
So what is there to do about it?
1. Make Each Hour Count
After all, it is, whether we like it or not. My two year old recognizes and points out a “tick tock” (aka clock) before just about anything else in a room. We teach him the numbers that tell the hour, and we watch the hands reach forward to the next without fail. So what are we doing in between 8 and 9, 11 and 12, 5 and 6? Usually, it’s a blur. We’re in a hurry; we’re getting ready; we’re settling back in.
Before my husband and I go to bed at night, he always asks me what my favorite part of the day was, and it gives my mind a moment to reflect back on what really happened between the hours on the clock. Time to search for all the good stuff. What if we asked ourselves what was our favorite part of the hour that just passed?
Would we be more intentional in filling our time with the good stuff kind of memories and do less worrying, less complaining, less wasting the day away?
I challenge myself to try it out – even right now. My hair’s messy, my clothes are dirty, but I can hear the sweet breath of my baby on my shoulder, and I am his Mommy. I wrap my mind around how big that gift is, as I hear the clock tick. I savor.
2. Be Flexible
I should try, I want to try, it would be so good for me to try out yoga. I have friends who love it so much they unconsciously strike a pose while snacking on goodies in my kitchen (you know who you are). Maybe just maybe, I could put these pants I’ve got on to their designed use if I would just be flexible enough with my schedule to do so.
Once a baby is first announced, we hear so much about schedules: when to register, when to have baby showers, when to take off and return to work. And there’s more: when baby should eat, when baby should play, when baby should sleep…. when mommy can rest (that’s a good one), when mommy can eat and shower and brush her teeth.
Yet, as my 41 week-induced first born taught me, not everything can stay on schedule as planned.
We need to be flexible to arrange and rearrange our day to fit in what matters to keep us all physically, socially and spiritually well.
If i’m still sitting in this chair at 5:00pm with a napping baby on my lap, it is okay today. If I actually leave the house at 7:00pm tonight to finally try out that yoga class, even better.
3. Remember You Are Always On The Clock
Any of us who have ever worked anywhere would likely have a stressed out look of shock at this one. After all, doesn’t “on the clock” mean actual work, mean doing the “have to” business, not the “get to” do fun? Sure, you could put it that way, but I mostly see it as doing the job you were designed for and being rewarded in full.
When I worked for an advertising agency out of college, I first learned what my time was worth – and it was surprisingly (to me) very little, monetarily speaking. We billed our time across our clients, and it resulted in the company getting what they needed from me, and me getting paid. I was on the clock.
Same goes for parenting.
What we’re doing, what we’re checking online (and how often), what we’re filling our minds and our time with is an investment into those little ones who depend on our days.
They are paying attention, watching and learning, and with God’s grace, they will realize how to properly love, live and appreciate how much of a treasure they are.
Ultimately, time is quick, but what we do with it can last forever.
I’ve hard it said that no matter the length of our days, be it at 99 years or much too young, the day that will matter the most is the very one you’re in.
Lord, help us make the most of the time we’ve been given.
We want to make it count.
Post me a note if you have any time-saving or time-savoring suggestions to share. Would love to hear from you!