With time, take time

Weeding is probably not high on the list of desirable chores for most people. I’m not sure it was for my neighbor and for the fellow parishioner but seeing these “senior citizens” weeding gardens reminded me that with time (age) comes the wisdom to take time.

The neighbor is in his 80s. My wife and I, as well as most of the other neighbors, keep an eye on his house, watching for him to be sure he is okay. The other morning, I saw him sitting on the sidewalk with an unlit cigar held in place by a practiced grip between his teeth and baseball cap protecting a head with much less hair than decades before. He was pulling weeds. Several hours later, he was still sitting on the ground, pulling weeds. There are times when taking time is the best way to deal with the passing of time in the mundane moments of life.

The same day, while volunteering for a grounds clean-up day at our parish, I witnessed a woman who had taken the chore of weeding rose gardens. She sat on the ground instead of kneeling, like the neighbor had done, and meticulously pulled weeds as she chatted with a friend on the phone. Just the tone of her voice sounded cheerful, joyful and not the least bit annoyed by the dreaded weeding task.

Both the neighbor and fellow parishioner shared a few attributes: they were seniors, patient, seemingly in the moment, and making the most of those moments. They, of time, had the wisdom/patience/grace to take time as it came.

Chores are part of life. In our younger years, we tend to rush through them to get them “over with.” By accepting that tasks take time, whether the chore is enjoyable or not, we can make the most of the time put into our efforts. With time (age) we can learn to appreciate taking time in moments. There is no need to wait to learn that wisdom.

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