“The time is going fast, . . . look mom, at the clock.”
I look at her and think at 4 years old she has no idea how fast that clock is moving. I have only a bit more of an idea than she, and my mother has more than I. As we approach the end of our own little slice in time, we get more of the idea, how fast it’s going and already gone.
In August, we sat down to watch our wedding video with the girls. It was eye opening to see how we’ve already aged since that day. Even more, it’s been thirteen years and in 12 more, our first baby will be 21 just like I was when I dressed in white chiffon and lace. Suddenly 12 years doesn’t sound that far away.
Do you ever stop and wonder how it is that our life is wrapped around this contraption that ticks and tocks and every second is checked off, keeping a tally of our breaths, as we’re busy trying to keep up with it, beat it? And why when I turn the hands backwards that’s all that happens? I can’t hold my husband’s hand for the first time again, or lift my slippery new baby onto my chest or feed her while my time zone sleeps. I force the minute hand from 59 to 15, but I still see faint lines showing up under my eyes.
I could erase my agenda, have no where to be on time, take a hammer to my clocks and the tick would still tock. The earth keeps turning and why does that make my skin lose elastic, hair turn gray, and children slip out of arms, not just growing big, but closer to death?
Time slipping away, watching the world decay makes me think of Fairytales. I don’t know how one goes through life without loving them. Like the one about a prince put under a spell when he was found unloving, and all around him was reduced to shriveled, gray, misery. It wasn’t a clock counting time, but a rose dropping petals. If love was found before the last one fell, all would be restored.
When did we come to believe it’s normal that life’s first beat is destined to a series of ticks that come to a stop? Anyone who has had to turn their back and walk away from a grave, experiencing the ultimate slipping out of fingers, wants to know it’s not.
I wonder even more how one goes through life believing that this is it . . . That there’s no prince coming to kiss us out of our trance, . . . to wake the ones we have been forced to lay down to sleep, . . . to introduce us to the babes we never got to hold, . . . to poison the evil witch that holds us down with her jealousy and pride, and loves that we no longer know the trees luster less than they were meant to.
The ticking of the clock . . . as fast as it seems to move at times, when I find myself waiting and watching for the Prince, can be painfully slow. Beautiful though, to think before we know it the clock will tock one last tick and we’ll be able to say with Hans Christian Anderson that, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” of all.