When All You Have Is 5 Minutes…

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Sometimes, you won’t have a lot of time.

The words will just have to show up ready, preformed. Packaged.

Hopefully with delicious filling...
Hopefully with delicious filling…

That’s how it is in life. It doesn’t always send you what would thrill you.

I’ve had it happen enough times now though–you don’t always realize what’s going to make you happiest. And it isn’t only writing that’s like that.

Charlotte wrote her first book report on Chocolate Fever, a great book for a first book report, and on the little form that asked the questions to help her prepare her paper, the last question asked what she learned from the book.

“Well,” she said, cocking her little 8-year-old head reflectively, “I didn’t want to read it at first.”

“Why not,” I asked, shocked to hear this title wouldn’t intrigue her. Had she seen the cover with the melting chocolatey popsicle on it?

“I don’t know. I just thought it would be about something else. But it wasn’t.”

“Hmm,” I mused, sensing a teachable moment, “You had a preconceived notion. So is that what you learned?”

“Yeah,” she said, picking up her pencil. “You shouldn’t judge a book by the cover or the title.”

That’s my girl. And I didn’t even prompt that in the slightest.

What is wrong with my kid? This book looks delicious.
What is wrong with my kid? This book looks delicious.

This is the problem: we don’t know what we want but we really, really think we do. It wouldn’t be so bad not to have a clear idea of our desires except for the part where we believe we have it totally nailed down. And we have this from birth. We think we’re the ones who decide what’s going to make us happy.

What really kills me about this in myself is that now that I’m reaching the cusp of “real adulthood”–40–I’m only now becoming able to see just how often I’m dead wrong about what I want and how often I always have been. And that’s not to mention what I need. That’s a whole different overstuffed bag of stupid proof.

It isn’t only me, right? This is a serious problem that deserves some further reflection. But as I said, 5 minutes is it for now. So chime in if you know what I’m talking about.

There’s more on this to come…

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3 thoughts on “When All You Have Is 5 Minutes…”

  1. Every so often I find myself running around life’s hamster wheel thinking I know I can find what I really want. To keep off that relentless wheel, I repeat Psalm 25:1 “O Lord, I give my life to you.” before I plant my feet on the floor each morning.

  2. all i can think of after reading this is that charlotte o’hara is a genius at age 8!!
    p.s. of COURSE i know what you’re talkin’ about, you think being 40 or 50 or 60 or 70 or 80 or 90 or 100 years old will make any difference? i don’t. however, maybe we’ll just get better senses of our own individual roles in the divine comedy. maybe? hopefully? cause laughter is the best medicine. the bible told me so . . .
    love
    suzee B
    p.p.s. truth time. do you like twinkies, mick??? a lot????

    1. Do you think? I hope she’s not actually. That sounds hard.
      P.s. Better sense. I do hope so. For some of us especially more than others. :)
      P.p.s. I try not to think about my all-consuming lust for Hostess sponge cake and creamy filling. Curses!

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