I must slow time. Or I will lose it. This a woman with twice my children tells me. And a three letter name to my five.
“What?” I say. “I don’t just pray, ‘Teach me to number my days aright, that I may gain a heart of wisdom?’”
“Well,” she says, “that and . . . “ She pats the grass beside her. Leans back against the tree’s trunk. I lower myself. Pluck a violet. Twirl it.
She watches the clouds, not me, as she speaks. “To slow time, you must love it. Appreciate it. Notice it. Examine your ankles and imagine minutes swirling all around. You stand firm yet they continue on. And on.”
The key she says is thanks. And the giving of it. Over and over. All the blessings flow. They are given. Consider that. No randomness here. Only love. And generosity. A father extends an open palm, good gift revealed. A child grasps fingers around. Tight. The papa waits. For a corner of a mouth lifted. A word whispered. An enthusiastic hug maybe. The moment stretches out. Lingers.
A thousand times a day. No, a minute. Maybe even a second. Everywhere. All over creation. In every life. Known and not. Presents proffered. Presence.
If you acknowledge the giving, another offering appears. Many actually. Joy, not mere happiness. Awareness. A shimmering of the moment. A pause. You hear and feel your respiration. Record the realization on your heart or perhaps on paper. Resume breathing and discover another thing a blink later.
Beauty (and bounty) is all around. Immanent. Constant. The living of life, the occurrence of another breath even, is gorgeous. Replete with what ifs. All the more lovely with gratitude. Magnified.
Ann rises. Tucks her hair behind her ears. I roll my fingers as she moves away. Watch hers. Middle finger joins pointer. Then the ring finger. And pinky. Other hand . . .