As the term ends and I get set to go off into the “Wild Blue Yonder,” I contemplate life and how 48 hours of time about 2.5 weeks ago changed everything and took away so much of my time over the days since that time transpired. At the beginning was a room management issue dealing with students using profane slurs against groups of people. That night, my tires were slashed at a different school, along with those of 2 other school employees. While another suspect seemed likely and affected said person's life in that wrong time after the wrong actions kind of way, it turned out that it was just 2 kids “joy slashing” (why we must make sure we don't jump to conclusions of who is guilty ABOUT ANYTHING that is done. Unfortunately, the teens who did this stupid and costly mistake made the mistake of coming back for more tires, which they did, but they also got identified when they came back (hoodies and darkness protected them the first time). Needless to say, I had to get my tires replaced, my car towed, and a rental car until I could take the time to get back to do it so that I wouldn’t lose vacation time (even with insurance, it still cost me my own money). Then, in the middle of the next day, I found out my one job officially ends today. All 3 were a major blow to my life, and the combined 1-2-3 punch made me think about life and where it's going as another term ends with the need to grade papers in the coming days (as well as other catch up stuff) when I originally had (and still have) other plans that are less “analytical of writing quality” and more expressive of joy and happiness.
Because of all of this, I think about the action movie Man on Fire, starring Denzel Washington. I really like the one part where he hunts down a guy who is involved in the kidnapping of Dakota Fanning, and he tells him, “I wish you had more time.” While the movie portrays it in a darkly humorous revenge moment, the concept of wanting more time makes a lot of sense for anyone, especially a Parkinson’s person like me. Thus, I am going to list 20 things I wish I had more time for on this cold Friday (especially as I reflect on how my condition will someday strip me of this time; thus, I have no time for time wasters).
1) Time where my medicine is working and I don’t have exacerbated symptoms or a need to get into the doctor or I have to readjust to a new medicine while hoping it works.
2) Time where I don’t have to explain the Parkinson’s mask.
3) Time to enjoy with my wife for more than ½ hour or hour before she sleeps.
4) Time to plan my godson Big D’s treasure hunt that his brother and sister will help him with (oh yes, it will be that good) because he appreciates The Curse of Oak Island.
5) Time to be with my extended family in a fun way
6) Time to plan Christmas gatherings and get some presents I need to buy
7) Time where I don’t feel that being mindless with video games or Netflix is the answer to another long day (though The Office is hilariously enjoyable)
8) Time to edit the last 400 pages of The Rules of the Game.
9) Time to get to writing the next book, whether the Parkinson’s book or my next book (Intersections - the 2,000 page mamma jamma collection)
10) Time to read other books.
11) Time to hike and be surrounded by trees
12) Time to blog more since this will inevitably serve as the skeleton for the Parkinson’s book
13) Time free from worry about my health, now and in the future
14) Time to grade papers before the deadline next Tuesday
15) Time free from worry about the stress of jobs I am working at (i.e. grading time).
16) Time to write Christmas card addresses, so I can mail them
17) Time to get end of the year CDs ready for friends
18) Time for end of the semester get togethers with various friends, which I had to pass up on due to other obligations
19) Time to do the dishes and laundry, as well as other chores
20) Time to sleep in as opposed to 4-6 hour nights.
If I could go back in time…
21) More time before I had to pay bills
22) More time not doing whatever caused my Parkinson’s
23) More time for fun with others and less for work
24) More time to appreciate the early 90s of my coming of age (great people, great music, summer dresses, time in England, seeing Europe, etc.)
25) More time to do physical stuff instead of eating at TGIFriday’s and building a belly.
26) More time saving money
27) More time studying subjects other than the ones I liked
28) More time doing anything other than going to the mall while in high school
29) More time spent not being cantankerous about life
30) More time appreciating the small things and choosing life.
So what do you wish you had more time to do?