To Everything There is a Season
by Jody Evans
"What time do you get home tonight?" I asked Greg, as we both hit the snooze alarm way too many times and prolonged the start of another week.
"I don't know," he said, "let me check."
He scrolled through his phone and determined it wasn't going to be too late, maybe 6 or 6:30.
"Guess I'll see you around later tonight," I said. "Parker has practice and we have to leave around 5. We won't be back until close to nine."
"Ok. And your mom and dad are picking up Sophie and Parker, right?" he added.
"Yep. And you have band practice tomorrow, right?" I ask.
"No, we changed it to Thursday." he said.
Suddenly, this Monday morning conversation becomes a tiny pause as we push through a web of schedules and activities, appointments and parties, obligations and interests, until the weekend comes and we look at each other and wonder where time went as it raced by.
A few weeks ago, Greg and I took off on a canoe and paddled past places that were part of his childhood memories. The location was new to me, but the lush green next to the clear stream brought back memories of playing in the creek at my grandparents' home in Birmingham to the many rivers and waterfalls my sister and I visited on our road trips to North Carolina or out West. I thought I was busy then, whether I was a nine-year-old with my interests in cheerleading and theater or as a college student who chose the stage over the sideline. I bounced my three-year-old niece on my knees a few days ago, singing about a riding a pony and letting her drop down playfully, tangling into my legs, giggling and climbing back to do it again. I felt myself step back in time as I remembered bouncing Hunter and Parker when they were that age. It seems so long ago that they could sit in my lap or be held on my hip as I navigated through life with one arm around them and one arm doing everything else. I didn’t get to experience the Fab Four (Emma, Elijah, Seth, and Sophie) when they were that little. However, in the almost seven years that Greg and I have been married, I’ve seen a 13 year old become a legal adult, an 11 year old graduate high school, a nine year old go off to a fine arts school, and a seven year old become a freshman in high school. They seem to be the same age as when I met them. Now I find myself looking up to them when I stand next to them, riding in the backseat or the middle because I am the smallest in the household, or stumbling over adult sized everything because no one is “little” anymore.
Sometimes it feels like time isn't marching by--it is racing by like a NASCAR champion or it is creeping by like a dripping faucet slowing filling up a large bucket. Time is a wizard that makes minutes stand still at the DMV. It freezes the hands on the clock to 2:59 so the 3:00 o'clock final bell never rings. Yet, hours disappear on the weekends on the lake with Sunday night chasing down Saturday so Friday seems like a blink and a distant memory at the same time.
"I never knew time went by so fast, until now," I told Greg as we glided down the creek in our canoe, with Greg sitting in the back, moving the oars from side to side with easy, steady rhythm.
"It has always raced by," he said. “We just never knew it."
I smiled and agreed. Suddenly, I found myself looking at Greg and seeing the lush green around his face, the afternoon sun glimmering in his eyes, and time stopped. I took a breath and closed my eyes, and then opened them to see him, leaning over me.
"I guess it's time to get up and get everybody going, " he said. "I've got an early appointment this morning. Do you think you can get Parker up and moving a little faster this morning?"
I smiled and said, "I'll do my best."
Psalm 139:16 "Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that are formed for me, when as yet there was none of them."