Last night, I was tucking my son in under his covers. The winter night was still and dark, but through our attic windows overhead, we could see an array of stars. He protested that he wanted to stay up and keep watching cartoons.
“It is bed time,” I said.
“Oh! Different times!” he exclaimed.
Different is his word of the week. At two years and one month old, he’s just learning to talk, and adding new vocabulary every day. Sometimes he will pick one word and keep saying it for everything, at any chance possible.
“Yes,” I said. “There are different times. There is day time, and night time, and time to eat, and time to sleep, and time to wake up. Now is time to sleep.”
He seemed content with this explanation, and closed his eyes. I kissed his forehead, thankful for no whining reaction, and lay down on my own pillow. I thought about the various stages, seasons, and times we have to learn about our whole lives. And that lesson never stops.
“There is a time and purpose for everything under Heaven,” says a poem of Solomon. I knew that nearly all my life, but still have a hard time adjusting. I always want the proverbial warm Summers to last forever, or the colorful Springs, or the romantic Autumns. I want the endless happy feelings, the constant thrill of success, the times of laughter, the friendships or relationships I think are forever.
But I need to learn to accept the different times: the down times and the confusing times, and the dark times, the times of loss. Just different times, and they will pass. Life goes on, and variety is good.
Karsten slept the whole night long, very soundly. And today, after watching an exciting documentary about the Most Thrilling Rides in the World, he had a new best word:
Oh, yes, life is like that, too.