Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Birds of the Air

When I was little, people would ask what I wanted to be when I grew up. A bird. Everytime I was asked, I said I wanted to be a bird. I was convinced if I worked hard enough, I would sprout wings and fly over the trees to make a nest for my family and me.

That didn't happen. I work in a call center right now. That doesn't mean that the desire has gone away. One of my favorite things in the world is to fly, and I do it every chance I get. Which isn't terribly often.

As I started understanding more about biology and the way the human body develops, I realized that wings were not on the table for me. I watched a movie, I believe it was called "Fly Away Home", where a girl took a gaggle of geese and taught them how to fly. She had to migrate with them, so her dad built her a small aircraft so she could fly with her children to a warmer climate. At that moment I realized that if I were to fly with birds, I would be required to have a machine to do the flying for me. I was a little disappointed.

Since then, I haven't really figured out what I want to do with my life. Dana and I have dreams of living overseas and working in community development, or investing in a certain community to love the people there, but what does that look like? I guess we'll figure that out when we get there. Wherever "there" is.

Sometimes I think it's awful to ask a kid what he or she wants to do with his or her life at a young age. It takes a bit of the fun out of being a kid. What do you want to do when you grow up? I don't know. I don't even know what I want for dinner. I don't even know what toy I want to play with next. Leave me alone and let me be a kid!

Kids are really good at living in the moment and as adults, we lose sight of that. We're always looking at what we're going to do, rather than what we are doing. We should encourage living in the moment. If they want to become a bird, then we should ask what type of bird rather than shooting them down.

That doesn't mean we get to avoid planning and being responsible with our time and resources. We do need to be conscious of staying in the present at the same time.

Today at lunch, I was observing birds. They were swimming around in the Mississippi, then they got out and cleaned themselves. They then propped themselves up on one foot and took a nap. How is this a bad thing? I was very tempted to follow suit until I looked at the murky river and decided I would rather not contract a vile disease.

I still want to be a bird, though. That desire will probably never leave. I can't decide if I would be a bird of prey with the mountains as my home, or a sparrow that can dart in and out of tiny spaces in a blink of an eye. I'll get back to you on that.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Time is not on Your Side

How many months of the year have 28 days in them?

All of them.

It's interesting how time passes. Some days seem to just drag when you're doing something you find extremely boring, or if you're waiting for a big event like your wedding in 18 days (shout out, Charles and Ruth!). Despite these dragging days, suddenly the summer is over, you're about to graduate college and you've been married over a year (shout out, Dee!).

I remember in middle school I would go baling with my great aunt. Her baler was broken and didn't push the twine completely out of the way of the oncoming grass. I would have to jump off the tractor after every bale and pull the twine 6 inches to prevent it from tangling in the next bale.

One of these long baling excursions, I was bored almost to tears. I consoled myself by saying that time isn't actually slowing down, I just think it is. By the next day, I would be doing something infinitely more interesting and soon enough, I would never have to do this again. Here I am, several years later, still very thankful that I'm not standing on that tractor anymore.

I didn't hate being with my great aunt so much as the fact that my presence was unnecessary. On several occasions, my dad and uncle both offered to fix the glitch, but my aunt liked the company. She refused every time because she didn't want to bale alone.

When I got too big to sit on the tractor, I would drive behind Harriet in her Rendezvous, in AC, listening to music that I brought with me. My aversion to baling with Harriet quickly diminished.

Time is interesting in other forms, too. There are seasons in life that seem to take forever to get through. Like college. I thought I'd never obtain my bachelor's degree, but I'm now beginning my final year at university. By May, I will be the proud owner of a diploma stating my eligibility to work. I don't know what type of work I will be eligible for, but I will be eligible to work.

This summer has been interesting to get through. In June, I wasn't sure I would be able to survive an entire summer sitting in a cubicle, then racing off to a second job afterwards. Three months of 50+ hours of work every week can really get to someone. Granted, I know a lot of people who work a lot more than that, but when it comes to being at work and paying bills, I'm weak. This Friday marks the end of this season, and I am very excited about it.

I was waiting to go on break this morning. I watched the clock go from 9:58 to 9:59. OK, one more minute and I can clock out. Has anyone ever told you that a watched pot never boils? Well, that's not true. Nor is it true that a watched clock never turns 10:00 am, but I'll be damned if it was only sixty seconds.