The Preciousness of Time

Creative Voices

By Annalucia Scotto di Clemente / Matthew staff || Edited by Marouso Pappa

It often happens that our hectic daily lives leave us little time to give importance and space to the precious things that surround us. It often happens that we are overwhelmed by our commitments, our adolescent anxieties, or fears about the futures that we are building.  

Sometimes we do things so quickly that we forget to eat, to go to the bathroom, or to reply to that friend who sent us a good morning message. We always try to keep up with everything, to make sure that things go well and let time flow without interruptions.

Fortunately, or unfortunately, I still can’t define it, particular occurrences have put a brake on my hectic life and forced me to listen to a lesson that I will never forget but that I will always try to pass on: the preciousness of time.  

Have you ever thought about time? I haven’t.  

I have always lived my life in a simple and repetitive way: school, study, sports, and a few weekends with friends. 

Almost four years ago, however, my everyday life was turned upside down. On Oct. 23, 2018, my mother gave me the most precious gift ever — giving birth to my little sister. That day was supposed to be the most exciting and lovely of all, not only for me but also for my family, but it wasn’t. Just a few seconds after feeling joy at the birth of the new little girl in our home, fear, anger, and sadness took the place of that beautiful feeling because of the news that my mom was seriously ill. 

In a split second, everything changed. I had to take the reins of my family and represent a safe port to land without fear for them.  

And this was my new routine: in the morning I went to school, after that, I went to the hospital to visit my mom, and then I ran home to be with the baby until the next day. Between a diaper change, a lullaby, and one feeding and another, I was studying for school, or I was tidying up the house that is always untidy when there is a child at home. 

This has been my routine for over a year. I was constantly thinking about how true the phrase “life gives to you and takes away from you” was because at that moment it was nurturing half of my heart, but it was ripping out the other half. I regretted all the times I said to my mom “no I have to study”, “I cannot because”, “no mom I do not want to”; I regretted all the times I did not listen, I treated her badly, but especially all the times when out of embarrassment, I didn’t say, “I love you.” 

Believe me, if I tell you that from that moment on, I hardly say no to her. I immediately tried to use every moment I had to spend time with her. I still remember studying Manzoni’s Betrothed sitting in the corridors of the hospital or writing my essays while checking the flow of the drips. I never regretted giving up my adolescence to be with my family especially because I didn’t know how much time I still had.  

To this day, I tell you that everything has taken a turn for the best, but I will tell you something even more important. We have just one life and limited time. Don’t be stubborn, don’t be shy, don’t be afraid to dare, to be yourself, and to love. Be foolish when living, learning, and traveling. Don’t be ashamed to express your feelings or emotions because they are the most beautiful part of us. I learned to live every moment and then keep it in my heart with care and dedication. I have learned to have priorities, objectives, and above all, I have learned that nothing is eternal.  

“Seize the rose when it is time, that time, you know, flies and the same flower that blooms today, tomorrow will wither.” 

Thank you