#teacher | WRITE TEAM: Thoughts on the flow of time

What about this thing called time? Does it really go faster as we grow older? Or only seem to?

I’ve researched that question a little! Here’s what I found:

A quote from “Quartz,” a global news publication, says:

“Mind time and clock time are two totally different things. They flow at varying rates … The chronological passage of the hours, days, and years on clocks and calendars is a steady, measurable phenomenon. Yet our perception of time shifts constantly, depending on the activities we’re engaged in, our age, and even how much rest we get.”

It appears there is a difference between “mind time” and “clock time.”

Also, our minds are less able to process time as we grow older.

When we are young and everything is new, time actually seems to be passing more slowly. As we get older, mental images slow, giving the sense that time is passing more quickly.

I never thought I would write about growing old. I hoped you wouldn’t notice!

And I thought it would take a lot longer.

Actually, it’s quite an adventure!

I’m trying to cultivate what Henri Nouwen, a Dutch priest, calls “holy indifference!”

I remember a goal-setting seminar I attended when I worked at Union Bank. We made a list of all the things we hoped to do in the years we had left. My list was long! It included travel, writing classes, speaking for Stonecroft, learning to play the guitar, and other things I hoped to do (after retiring from the bank, of course!)

I began with guitar lessons! I already played piano and organ, so I thought it would be easy. But the guitar was different – I had to create the sound – not just plunk the keys. I struggled but practiced faithfully – often late at night.

At the end of my first year of lessons, my teacher encouraged me to go to “contest” and I reluctantly agreed.

My piece had to be memorized. When my turn came, I handed my music to the judges and began. In the middle of the piece, I forgot how to end it. So I played the middle again, and again! Then I simply played a chord I hoped might sound like the end, and returned to my seat and told Don I wanted to go home.

The following week my teacher said, “Carole, I have a surprise for you! You have a trophy!” I was amazed and I said, “But it didn’t go well!”

“But you were the only one in your age group!”

I returned the following year and took second place! There were two of us that time!

Two trophies now perch on my shelf, and my granddaughter has the guitar!

It’s OK to try, even if we fail!

In my retirement years I’ve enjoyed opportunities to travel, write, speak, and make new friends.

I am thankful for a loving husband, three fine sons, lovely daughters-in-law and six super grandchildren.

I became a Christ follower at the age of 15 and set out to see what God had planned for me.

It’s been quite an adventure!

It still is!

A poem I wrote during a writing class at Illinois Valley Community College describes how I see time.


Time is a line surrounded by eternity.

Time is the line on which we all live.

Time is the sequence of my nights and days.

Time defines who I am, and how you see me.

Time is a line surrounded by eternity.

Someday time will no longer be,

This line in the midst of eternity.

We will see God as He is.

We will see each other as we are,

Complete for all eternity.

CAROLE LEDBETTER is a lifelong Ottawan who sees every day as an adventure. She is the author of two books: “Who Am I Now?” (2007) and “Carole’s Columns” (2016) available at Prairie Fox Books in Ottawa, Illinois, and online at Amazon or from the publisher, Redemption Press. She can be reached at tsloup@shawmedia.com.

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