For me, it was that time is a most precious commodity.
As a kid, I fought time.
I’d say I don’t want to practice keyboard and drums for a half hour each day! Do I have to practice my gymnastics for a whole hour every single day? How long until we get there? When can I go out and play? Do I have to go to bed right now? and on and on.
Then a huge shift happened.
When I was 14, my last living grandparent was ill. She was in her 80s and not well in the hospital. We visited often making long three hour treks each way to keep her company. It was a lot of time spent in a car and I was tired of it.
Then one day we visited and she wasn’t talking as much. In fact, while we were there she lost her ability to speak. She looked especially weak, but we could tell she could see and hear us as we talked to her. That day, my sister and I said our good-byes, hugged and kissed her and told her we’d see her again soon. Our last words to her were, ‘I love you.’
Once we got home, the phone rang and mom and dad were visibly sad. Grandma could no longer hear and her vision was gone. Shortly after, she died.
My little sister (12) and I were the last two people she could hear and see before her death.
I understood in that moment she gave us the most precious thing she had to give in her weak state – her time.
I never looked at time the same way again.