Monday, October 1, 2007

Counting on time

A new week, a new month. The calendar pages turn, October arrives on a whiff of burning leaves, mornings crisp like the edges of a golden leaf curled up against frost's encroachment and gravity's inexorable pull towards the ground.

I made a choice not to write yesterday. C.C. and I had spent Saturday driving through southern Alberta, taking backroads and dirt tracks, exploring places neither of us had ever been, witnessing falls glorious unfolding through the foothills of the Rockies. We arrived back into the city late, our spirit's refreshed from our travels. So, when yesterday arose with the same splendour, I let myself unfold with the ease and grace of the leaves turning.

When a leaf turns, it doesn't get to choose its colour. It just turns. Yesterday, I decided to follow suit. To simply let my day unfold without forcing it into one direction or packing each moment up with so many 'to do's' I miss the colours turning. I had one commitment to keep last evening -- and other than that, it was a day without structure.

At 9 am, a girlfriend called and asked if I wanted to go to the Centre for Positive Living with her. Good idea! I did it. When I got home, I started cleaning -- hadn't intended to, but one swipe of the kitchen counter led to the next, until the entire kitchen was sparkling and I was filled with the satisfaction of a job well done. Without conscious effort, my bedroom closet opened itself up to possibilities. Summer clothes were looking a bit too light and flimsy in autumn's frost, and so I began the process of changing over the seasonal garb. Eventually, the puppies needed a walk, C.C. joined me and the day unfolded with a natural and smooth rhythm I don't often experience.

Too often, my life is a series of 'must do's' inextricably tied to the constant passing of hands across a clock's face. With exacting precision, I measure time out in carefully steeped portions of so many minutes to get through before the next 'to do'. Every moment accounted for, shaken out and beaten like a goose down quilt to ensure not a single moment is left lying undisturbed, I fill the time allotted and fill my day with time passing. In the process, focussed on how much time I have or don't have, I miss passing through the day in step with the world around me.

What a joy to spend a day without feeling time's pressure ticking in the background.

I have no idea who wrote this but I like this quote: “Don’t count every hour in the day, make every hour in the day count.”

Yesterday, I wasn't counting the hours. I was living each moment as it arrived, not measuring time, but rather, measuring my movements, filling each moment with what I was doing, not what I was thinking about doing next.

The question is: Where does time's passing determine how you pass your day rather than passing your day in time with the moment? Where does time determine what kind of day you have?

1 comment:

terraflora said...

Thank you SO much for the reminder to refresh! To go for the backroad drive, to LET the day unfold. At least once in a frequent while we need to... It feeds our soul for the next round of ....'cuz I hafta's'!

Reading this made me feel like I was on the same break! Many thanks!!