Time is everywhere. Always.

It’s in our conversation when we talk about how it flies. We speak of its motion, and how it marches on. Some of us give young ones a time-out; sometimes we wish we could do the same to some older people. We speak of Father Time, of how we wish we could stop time, and we sing of it when it’s Time to Say Goodbye.

We pass it by being alone, with friends or loved ones, and we pass it at work, at play and while sleeping. Time sees our worries, our joys, our excitement, our depressions, our tears and our anger. It passes whether we are being productive or complacent.

Each morning, I bake a chicken breast for that day’s lunch. I usually have a few minutes of down-time while I wait for the oven to come to temperature, and the other morning I fell into a fixed stare on nothing in particular. My ears picked up the rhythmic tick-tock of the clock on the wall, and it seemed as though the seconds were passing by twice as fast. I thought nothing of it, figured my clock was on the fritz and then the oven beeped. It was ready for my chicken.

I placed the pan cón pollo inside, set a digital timer and realized that the speedy wall clock wasn’t so speedy. It was actual; it was right on. Time was hauling ass, and I was still in my jammies. And for the first time in my life, I felt like the end was just around the corner.

OK, not really. But I was legitimately shocked that I’d apparently never appreciated the speed of time before. And if ever there was a time to, wasn’t it right then and there? Some say better late than never. And even if we don’t know when our last day will be, I’m a big believer that even just one day spent maximizing every second is better than a lackadaisical lifetime. Tonight I am thankful for the passing of time and its reminders — second after second — that it stops for nobody. Certain things, people, consequences and ramifications will always be able to move us to action. But what better to get us in motion than the thing that always is? Here’s to maximizing seconds, minutes and days for as many of them as each of us has left.

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