When time does NOT fly
"Time flies when you are having fun." This old adage is true in so many ways. However, if left to surface level entertainment, self-indulgence, self-soothing, and self-gratification, this way of thinking quickly becomes trite, shallow, and life-sucking rather than life-giving.
We have now spent 12 days on our journey abroad. These past 12 days have felt more like 12 months. Why is that? I thought time flies when you are having fun. We are having fun aren't we? We have had fun. There is no question about it. In the last 12 days, we have lived more life as a family than we have the last 12 months. Coincidentally, during the time we have been traveling and experiencing life in our first destination of Portugal, time has slowed down. These first dozen days on our journey have probably been the most fulfilling we have ever experienced individually and no doubt collectively.
What is happening here? What is this we are experiencing? What is it we are feeling? Maybe you have felt it too? At some point in your life, at some point in your last year, at some point, have you felt time literally slow down in a different way, a good way?
While on our first leg of our journey we have been so grateful to connect with hundreds of friends, family, acquaintances, and even strangers who are encouraging us along in our journey. Most connect through social media, some connect more personally and face-to-face while on the road but that is rare and then there are some who text us or check in through some form of personal communication that technology allows us to do in the 21st century. One such interaction occurred during our first four days of our #DrinkwineTogether adventure. We received a text from a friend back home in Nashville who also loves to travel. We encourage you to follow him on Instagram at @jgrantjenkins
We have come to know Grant and we have followed his journey of #WanderingWell over the last year or so. He texted us during our first week and asked how our journey was going thus far. We responded with a quick text that went something like this: "Splendid. Otherworldly... we've only been gone for four days and it feels like four months..." Truthfully, that is how we have felt. Why though? We had discussed this feeling but really could not place our finger on it. Shouldn't time speed up if we are having fun. Time should not slow down right? Grant replied with some great insight:
"I think you know deep down you are not just on 'vacation' from a hectic life. Usually on 'vacations,' it takes at least half the trip prying your mind off of everything still happening at work while your'e gone, and what is waiting for you when you get back. But right now, on a soul level, you know that you can be fully present. (You) can feel fully immersed and present."
Currently, we will spend 243 days traveling to nine total destinations. If we can feel fully immersed in each destination, each culture, each language; than we are not sure how we will continue to feel. Who knows, perhaps the 243 days will feel like 243 lifetimes when we are finished? Or maybe we are not finishing after all, maybe we are just beginning. No matter the outcome, we can confidently declare something is different. This different is, in fact, good. It tastes good. It feels good. It is refreshing. It is encouraging.
What is it that slows time down for you? Where is it in your life in which you may need to change the pace a little? What does your soul need so you can be fully present? What works for you? No matter where you are, no matter where we all find ourselves, our souls need repair. Traveling, working in a garden, taking walks, riding horseback, petting a dog, playing with children, painting an art piece, sculpting clay, learning a new skill; these are just a few ways that repair our souls. Pick one or something entirely different and we encourage you to get lost in time... make it crawl and not fly, make it slow to a sauntering pace. Live in it. Breathe in it. Soak it all in.