Growing up in the 70’s-80’s life seemed to be a little slower. Maybe it was because it was considered normal to play outside till the street lights came on. Or maybe it was riding bikes with the wind at our backs always pretending we were one thing or another. Just maybe it was looking forward to Saturday morning cartoons and church on Sunday. Whatever it was, the hands on the clock seemed to tick at a much slower rhythm.
Humans have always had an obsession to save time, but is time really something we can or should save? or is time something that we should spend every moment of?
I remember when I was 9 years old and my parents bought our first microwave. Boy was that the rage. It was suppose to save time preparing meals and providing more family time. But did it? Then it was the dishwasher and although, I do agree this was one of the best inventions and I love mine, but did it really give us more time? We still have to load, wait for washing and then unload.? Now for the big one… the cell phone. This device was advertised as a time saving device. We no longer had a cord connecting us to a wall or try and find a payphone. We could call and talk to anyone at anytime but somehow along the way the cell phone became not just a way to verbally talk to someone it became the center of our time.
But what if we had it all wrong? What if we missed the point? For those of us that had to grow up “without” so many things that we have today, did we really miss out? Growing up we ate dinner and washed dishes together. It was during those times that we had the best conversations.
I remember my Momma, who was born in the 40’s, tell me how she grew up and how hard life was. She would also tell me of the many houses she lived in that had one room for her parents and two siblings. When I say one room, this was the original open concept living because that consisted of the whole house. The meals her Momma would fix over an open stove and sometimes with not a lot to eat but always thankful for what they did have.
Life was simple but she never failed to mention the times they explored the creeks, walked through the woods played with sticks, rocks and anything else they could find to pretend with. She explained how they used to walk to school. She talked about how far it was and that they had to walk even in the snow. I used to tease her that walking to school was uphill both ways and she only had one shoe. But the one thing she always stressed that even tho they didn’t have much and it was hard, they had each other.
So I ask again, Did we have it all wrong? Not that technology is bad or some inventions don’t save us some time (I would rather drive somewhere than walk) but we rush to go here and there and do this or that without stopping to take it all in.
I have been guilty of this as well. Although I was a play outside everyday kind of kid and raised my three girls to do the same, somewhere in this thing called life, we have missed the point somewhere. It’s time to slow down, enjoy the journey, smell the roses along the way, take it all in, enjoy each moment, because one day we may look back and realize that trying to “save” time, actually cost us more than we saved.