The Presumption of Time

Time WallWhen it’s Monday, we will wish the week would hurry up and speed through to Friday. Or better yet, Friday at 5pm right?

I am totally that person and guilty as charged. Constantly wishing away my time until I had some time to think about things over Christmas. So much of my time was spent wishing my time away and obsessing over the passage of time. There never seems to be enough of the stuff, which is a small anxiety that I have. Before I abnormal-ize myself further, I know many business people and business owners, executives and the like who have the same pseudo-anxiety over time. But they are able to wear watches. I will sprain my neck if I wear one, so I do not.

There is a ‘dead clock’ in my home office area right now which I consider a victory. It makes me feel slightly uneasy, even while it does not work. It’s a beautiful antique clock set into a rustic looking Christian Cross, made of a rusted kind of metal. Very Texan I think. Has that Tex/Mex flair that I like. I only look at it periodically when I am in here working. At most, 50-90 times per hour.

I considered the antique accessory/art piece to be cheap therapy. I also purchased a ticking clock for the kitchen. Now that took guts, let me assure you. I hate the damned things in a way that few people can appreciate.

But for someone who hates clocks as I do (chronometrophobia … like it or debunk it, I haz it) I certainly obsess over time. How effectively am I using my time? How much am I being paid for every hour of activity? True, that is probably consistent with most consultants/business owners but it irritates me when other people squander their time. Or ask me how they can make more money, or work from home when their idea of a busy day is watching television? I consider conversations like that to be a tremendous waste of time. Mine, not theirs. I value mine not as a matter of arrogance but … well, I’m not sure why to be honest. I just feel like I have to be producing SOMETHING or I am slacking off.

If I can produce a 50lb weight loss this year I’ll be happy. I promised myself I would get an A+ instead of a D- in diabetes this year, before bad things start to happen. Like blindness, amputations, heart attacks… all the lovely things I try not to think about. I didn’t ask for diabetes but if I allow myself to mismanage my health condition, I own the consequences. But now, so will a great husband and two kids who love me. I’m not okay with that, so it’s A+ and overhaul to the poster child for low blood glucose for me. Even though that doesn’t go well with my daytime work / night time consulting schedule. Without carb or caffeine loading (I am entirely off the soda now) I find it hard to pile the 70-90 hours per week that I work cumulatively. I sleep more now, which bugs me too.

If there is a reasonable way to get something done or a fast-track, difficult keener kind of way to get it done, I will consistently default to the over-achiever path. Like paying my back taxes off in one year where many in my position would finance over 3-5 years. I don’t know what next year will be like. All I know is that right now, I want to be debt free and buy a house as soon as possible. I’ll pile the contracts and hours if it means I get from A-Z in less than a year. My husband gets what I am doing and supports me, even if I worry him from time to time with my work load.

10835188_10154976257720191_3318262757071793356_oPhase III is buying our house. I’d like to fast forward 24 months and be there now. If wishes were fishes, and I had a credit rating in the USA. That takes time. In the meantime I’ll trail blaze somewhere else like finances. I’m also pretty sure I want to go back to University and get a Masters in Business. Consulting with Lake Forest Graduate School of Management (Chicago) put the bug in me. I always meant to get my Masters. Life threw me some steep curve balls, and I still hit a few into the outfield. A home run would be making that happen AFTER we buy a house. With a pool. And room for my fruit and nut trees and giant tomatoes.

Somewhere my Nonno is laughing at my desire to have my own working garden. Me; yes the one that resented the hell out of being forced labor in his many gardens. It is funny how life works that way.

I have this feeling that I am not going to be given quite as much time on this planet as I would like. Whether it is because of diabetes or just a gut feeling, I have never thought that I would make it to the point of being one of those elderly, widowed women in the nursing home. I don’t think I’ll be that lucky for a number of reasons and so, the time that I do have I am focused on doing the most with. The last husband I had was set up quite nicely by the time our tenure ended. I plan to hold on to this husband tightly until death do us part, but when that knock comes at the door for me, I’d like to know my husband and children have everything they need.

I have no presumption of time really. I do not blindly think I’ll be here forever, which is why I find sitting and watching television for long spells to be intolerable. It produces nothing. I’d rather be working or writing, or outside walking or spending time talking with someone I enjoy learning from. Or petting my best friend who just turned 15 in December like tomorrow might be the day he leaves me.

The impetus to not waste time is probably why I am writing this at 2:20 a.m. on a Monday night. And why I used the opportunity to give my new blog a facelift so that I would like it enough to contribute more often. While personal blogging takes time, I see the value in making a journal of my learning you know? A place to put the ceaseless pondering.

I am no longer trying to prove myself to people who don’t care. I suppose I am trying to prove myself to myself, or maybe assure myself that I have value, even if I am a woman without parental approval. If you knew both of them, you’d know that their disapproval of me is actually a good thing. I have integrity and kindness in me that is not genetically predisposed. And you’d be amazed how easily I defer questions about my parents and sister.

“How do your parents feel about you living in Texas?”
“Honestly? I don’t think they care.”

“What is your sister like?”
“I really don’t know anymore.”

And when they look at me staring at my nails, or carefully examining my shoes to avoid looking overly pathetic they usually ask:

“Does your family miss you?”
And I quietly (but confidently) answer “No. They really don’t. But I live vicariously through my husbands wonderful family.” Anyone who knows me knows the sarcastic humor is usually deployed when the query cuts a little too close to the bone. Make them laugh; throw them off track. No one likes a sob story, particularly from a 40+ year old with so many other blessings in her life.

10881669_10152460675312587_9149277166252097040_nAnd I am both aware of and deeply grateful for every blessing I have. I am also aware of people in my history who abused my kindness and compassion, and think that cutting out toxic blood relationships to have a happy life is about as courageous as you can be.

But I am pretty sure that the clock stops for people with regret. And not in a good way. I’m glad I have none.

But sometimes when I am tired I have this crazy thought … that I’ll be given the exact amount of time to fulfill whatever purpose God has in mind for me. And when I have that thought, the sleep comes with pleasant dreams of new memories and new adventures in a new family who loves me. And there is peace.