Time Is Not Rational
In 1928, a man who would live several different lives was born.
An elephant washer for Barnum & Bailey circus. You know, when you just hop on a passing train and take on the duty of washing elephants. NBD.
A bowler. A pool player. A trouble maker.
A husband. A father. A grandfather. A great grandfather. A Great great grandfather.
Life was rough with him. But life was so good to him.
Today, sitting beside him. It's a rough day.
The kind when you question the Lords plan. You question your own strength, and you want to step in and play director.
I didn't know much about my grandfather. And unfortunately, it took an event that led to me sitting in a plastic green chair, in a cold hospital room beside him to figure out that even grown men try to carry the weight of the world when they are currently struggling to carry their own weight.
I wrote that just two days ago.
I was sitting in the room alone with my grandfather and it's hard to pass the time when the person you are watching over is in excruciating pain, moaning, and pleading for the Lord to take him home. In fact he had his arms wide open in his hospital bed telling me it was his worst day ever, hoping to get ease from the discomfort by giving up his life on Earth, just yesterday. The same day he would find out that he is actually improving and will start PT and is looking to go home in 3-4 days. (My mind is still trying to comprehend this).
So, I wrote that beginning few paragraphs sleep deprived and at conflict with my inner self trying to make sense of what I was experiencing while at the same time trying to document the man I had gotten to know so quickly in such an intimate and real moment in his life. In case I would never get the chance again.
We always say "I wish". I wish I had done this when I was younger. I wish I made more time for playing with my kids. I wish I volunteered more. I wish we lived closer to family. I wished I had spent more time with _____ before they passed. I wish, I wish, I wish.
When I started looking into why we don't pursue the things we so long for and desire I came across the best advice from the person I least expected. Which considering my past week was spent with a man who talked constantly about the Lord, from whom I least expected. I feel like this is the perfect fit.
....Or in this case the fact that we are just too darn scared to take a risk on SOMEONE.
We only get one shot at this life. You can choose to let the petty get in the way of you and your loved ones. The time distance between you. The inconvenience of carving out time for each other. The assumption that someone has nothing to offer you thus you never offer them any of your time. But in the end, who is left questioning WHY?
I have learned several things from my grandfather this past week.
One. If I want to know about a person I can't expect them to come to me open handed spilling the beans giving me all the advice and knowledge about their past and lessons learned...without asking them for it in the first place. I sat there wondering why all the times I did see my grandpa we didn't talk about these things. It occurred to me maybe I never sat still long enough for him to tell me and most importantly.....I never asked.
Two. The Lord reaches people. When you become a believer you sometimes categorize people. These are my fellow believer people over there and over here, these are my non believer people. Coming from a family where church has not always treated them well and practices of faith were not biblical in those places. I chose to live out in my belief not expecting my family to understand or to follow. BUT, there is something to be said about an old man with many mistakes admitting to you that in the end he believes there has to be something more. That when he turned his life around there WAS something more. I am also pretty sure my grandfather doesn't regularly read the bible, so when he told me he was going to live in the garden of eden, he was in the house of the Lord with many rooms, and that HIS God is so good. I know that God reaches people. Especially in their darkest and at their lowest.
Three. If we sit around waiting for the right time or enough time we will spend the rest of our lives waiting. When you say "someday we'll make that happen". Someday isn't a day. And most likely it will never happen. Because as Jim Carrey said, we rationalize things. We convince ourselves that something doesn't "make sense" so we don't do it. The same as waiting for "enough time". Who ever has "enough time". I didn't have "enough time" to spend three days at the hospital un showered and prickly legged. But guess what, because I made it a priority to be there because I wanted to be there. I went there. And we molded and reframed everything so that I could be there.
And the time was there.
As I learned from this whole situation, having doctors tell you to get the family together to start making plans for goodbyes, to being told the same person would be going home in 3-4 days well... life is sometimes not rational. But it's happening.
Time is not rational. Spend it wisely.