We are trying to teach Julia about time and how to read clocks, so after lunch the other day I told her it was time for her nap when the big hand reached the twelve.
With five whole minutes left to play, George and I grew preoccupied with our own things, and we forgot to keep track of where the Big Hand was. Eight minutes later we found Julia staring up at the clock. She pointed and said in wonderment, “It just keeps on going!” How profound, Julia!
Like so many other lessons, teaching the concept of time to a two-year-old is a humbling process. It has made me even more aware of how much we are all governed by the Big Hand. Now, when we tell her to do something like sit down for dinner, clean up her mess, or take a nap, sometimes she asks, “what does the Big Hand say?”
Paradoxically, as life changes, time remains our constant. On good days, this philosophy works because it helps me appreciate every moment. But it is especially helpful for me on difficult days because it reminds me that time will “just keep on going” and that things will eventually get better. (I haven’t told Julia yet, but that’s partially how I got through 23 hours and 44 minutes of labor with her!)
It is up to us to use the minutes and hours in every day to be the best people we can by loving each other and God, listening to one another, and learning about the world around us.