Monday, September 15, 2008

Finding Time

There's something about children being read to that is just magical to watch. Kids that can't sit still for any lesson during the day, turn into jello when story time comes along. Not as if frozen, but like melted butter--some twist and turn their bodies, finding just the right comfort level, others with their tongues hanging out or their long hair stuck in their mouth, as if a lollipop, and many, many of them laying down, chin in their hands, feet in the air, never taking their eyes off the reader. So many of them are just learning to read, others have gone beyond that, but everyone one of them is totally transfixed by listening to the adventures of a make-believe character.

The latest talk at school is about teaching children age-appropriate concepts. One of those concepts is TIME. Children before the age of seven or so, don't really understand the concept of time. I came across a great article in one of my classrooms (one of my head teachers is a relentless pursuer of knowledge in --what seems like--millions of subjects) that retold a story of a little boy who was turning 6 years old. He was blissfully celebrating when his grandmother asked him how many years ago he was born and he responded, "um, I think about ten years ago." It's a bit how I've felt these last couple months: the concept of time, lately, seems a bit unmanageable.

It's everything flying by me so fast. It's someone being born and then someone dying in the same week. It's my niece entering sixth grade. It's my parents getting older. It's friends worrying about wrinkles. And it's just me, feeling like I should hang on to a lamp post, as if time might sweep me up and I want it to swirl by me and I could catch up just a bit later.

That old saying, "youth is wasted on the young", comes to mind a lot. "If I knew then what I know now" is another phrase that rises to the top of my brain often. Watching kids play and grow, I want to take their hand and tell them to enjoy every single second of this. Watching someone older grow weaker, I want to ask them not to go yet.

The passing of time is a real struggle for me, just like those little six year olds.


montague said...

i know what you mean, and i feel it so strongly. it's all out of our hands - life, time just rushing by and no time to say STOP!

thetiniestspark said...

hear hear ... i think once safely out of your teens you realize how fast it's all whooshing by and it is freaaaaaaaaaaaaking me out. i totally 'GET' tuck everlasting now. that book is wasted on 6th graders.

comfies said...

so true mol. it's all flyin' by, every minute of it.

Bonbon Oiseau said...

True dat, mol...I've been trying to accept it in order to slow it down...sometimes that works.
My niece made a little book when she was 3 years old called the "little red hermit crab" about a hermit crab who one day turned blue. So he waited. It didn't work. Then he said, I just won't think about it. IT WORKED (he's back to being red on the last page).
Maybe it's about repression, maybe it's about acceptance, but it's really helped me get through a lot of stuff...hmmmmm....