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  • Betty Girardeau

Just a Minute


How many times have we said "Just a minute"? I am quite sure that if I had even a nickel for all the times I have said it, I would be rather rich. Usually we say it to put something or someone off because we are too busy at the moment. Usually that minute really isn't a problem or doesn't amount to anything particularly gained or lost. But sometimes it can mean all the difference in the world. Yesterday morning I awoke to rather dense fog. At that time of day it can change or burn off rapidly, and while it was lovely to look at, my first impression was that there was nothing all that remarkable about it. But as I was making the bed I looked out the window again and something about the light had changed just enough that the branches of this one little tree were standing out in contrast to those around it. They reminded me of claw-like fingers reaching out through the fog. I grabbed my iPhone and immediately took a couple of pictures. The timing for me to see this and grab that view was perfect. A few minutes later, when I had finished making the bed, the fog was already clearing and the branches that had beckoned to me just a minute before had merged back into the surrounding ones, no longer looking very remarkable at all. As I think about this, I believe there is a bit of a life lesson here. How many times have my children, my husband, or even a friend reached out to me wanting to share something important to them, and my response was "Just a minute"? I put them off and, in so doing, did I dampen their enthusiasm? Did I, even marginally, hurt their feelings? Did I miss an opportunity to enjoy a special intimacy? Of course, there is no way of knowing for sure. I do know that sometimes, after I had taken that "minute" for myself that I thought I really needed, and asked what they had wanted, their response was, "It doesn't matter." But maybe it did.

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