In the midst of our challenges, life’s clock still ticks
Technology has shown us its benevolence in making products once considered scarce commodity and for the highly placed, accessible to the average person. Sometimes we still wish we could place ourselves in the past and joke at what a comic we would make of what had being a norm. I looked back to my childhood and when I see such déjà vu before my eyes, the kind that we were part of, just over a decade back, I marvel at how much has changed.
You may hark back to that period when only few persons in the community had the ancient grandfather clock. Everyone would flock to the houses of these persons to have a glimpse of what the time was. Knowing what the clock indicated was a novelty. As a child, people considered you “sharp” if you could tell the time. A proud mum would call out her son, “junior go check the time at Papa Joe’s place.”Junior would spring, a proud son of his mom over to Papa Joe’s house a kilometre away. This was his only chance to escape from his mother’s grip. He would whistle as he walked majestically towards the house. ‘Junior how are you’, Papa Joe would ask as he saw this small sweating man rush into his sitting room. “My mom sent me to check the time,” he would say. Junior would stare at the hands of the clock, “long hand in 5; short hand in 8”, he would memorise; “long hand in 5 and the short hand in 8” just so that he would not forget, and hoping his friend would not come along his path so that it does not slip his memory. If he forgot, he would have to return to Papa Joe’s house or else face the threatening glare of Mom.
This may be your experience. Though we did not have the clock at our disposal, the fastchanging, time-oriented world was taking a strong grip on us that we had to be conscious of time and find a way to know what it indicated.
Today, there is certainly not enough time to get everything going. We have to make do with our “little” time and pray we can fix all our engagement into them. From when a child comes into life, his parents begin to measure his time. A mother anticipates that in two months, the weaning process is over and she would return to her business pushing the child to a day care system. Time runs fast and by fourteen out of secondary school. By twenty, he should be a medical doctor. What a rush? When you ask why, they would say’ there is no time’.
Wait! Where are we heading? We may seem in a digital world where our digital clock does not tick. We no longer hear the lull in between two ticks so we think we just have to keep running through. While the clock is there to guide our activities, it should not be our master. Like the pausing ticks on the old grandfather clock, there should be time to relax and make productive thoughts.
There is time for everything under the sun. There is time to learn. We cannot be successful without learning. Some persons want to achieve without going through all the painful process of learning. They want to ‘ rush through’. Many people, especially parents, reject this ideology. They want their wards to break the rules, jump classes, and get to places they are not qualified for. The endpoint, which is often not favourable, leaves them in a state of discontent.
The “no time” syndrome has led to development of the “succeed at all cost” approach in which people do all to ensure often against the ethics of the game to get what they want. While we must succeed, patience should be a rule. Wait for your turn, do not break the line because you think you feel you have no time, and should be given benefit over others to enable you rush over to another task. If everyone were to consider time, no one would get anything going. Everyone would act at random and society would be in a confused state; every one seeking his own, and often getting nothing.
Pass through time; let everything happen in its time as you work towards your goals. Do not let time pass through you; else, you will be pushed to make decisions that will be detrimental to you and the people around you.
Ekekere wrote from Abuja<ekeresamuel@ gmail.com>