When I spend time on the erg (rowing machine), I rarely follow prescribed workouts. I usually turn on my ipod and let the music wash right over me as I move along with it, which is not really using correct technique. Today, though, I decided to try to stick to a workout that had me pulling at a specific spm (strokes per minute). I was trying to be consistent at a 20 (spm), which is a little fun because you start a new stroke every 3 seconds so you can watch the clock and catch accordingly. As I was watching the clock tick by and calculating when to catch again, I was struck by how many moments there really are between seconds.
This is a phenomenon not lost on swimmers, runners, and rowers - they chase these moments throughout their careers (as we know by watching them in the Olympics). That extra .1 second decides who makes history and who is an "almost". (It sounds harsh but as an "almost" for my whole life I feel I can say it!) For the rest of us who are not chasing down half-seconds but burning them like they are nothing - folding laundry and refereeing things like Lucken Wrestlemania and making dinner - time can lose its luster. Those half-seconds aren't worth so much when you are caught up in the banality of everyday life.
Sometimes, though, even for the almosts like me, life comes on hard and fast, staring you right in the eye. For me, it's been so many things this year that keep hitting me and the face and telling me - "HEY! We really aren't here forever!" and most recently it has been hitting me saying "And either are our loved ones!" Even the longest of lifetimes isn't long enough to spend together with the people we love!
So tonight, on a sad night, I am strangely comforted by the reminder of all the moments that there really are in a second. There is a lot of time there. I resolve again tonight to take that time to love the people around me. It's not enough, but it's there and will have to do.