When Time Stands Still

Sometimes, time stands still.

I remember when my father called me to say that my mother, in a coma, was slipping away. Time stopped.

Or, the time when I had to tell my niece and nephew, then 7 and 9, that their father had passed away. I wish time at that point time would accelerate. It didn’t. It agonizingly slowed down.

I write this because my heart goes out to a friend, who wanted to update me on his startup but needed to cancel. His wife was just diagnosed with breast cancer.

Over the weekend, at 11 pm at a bar during my business school reunion, a few of us were chatting about when would be a good time to stop working.

I told them my POV: I love what I do and can always imagine myself working with entrepreneurs. I’m not looking to do The Next Job.

“Maybe a good litmus test is this,” I said. “You get a call from your doctor and the test result isn’t good at all. You have three years left to live. Would you then decide to quit your job?”

So, I’ve been thinking about these things today since getting my friend’s email about his wife.

I think time, not money, is the most precious asset. When it is limited, it is a forcing function on our priorities.

This is weird but as I get older I am thinking more about time. What if I were hit by a bus tomorrow? Am I living my life today in a way that I don’t have any regrets? Were my last words to my wife and children kind ones or not? And, if my last words needed to offer warranted criticism, did I do so in a loving way?

For the past month, I’ve started a new habit. When I see Mrs. T. in the morning and when I come home from work, I place a gentle kiss on her cheek.

It is a small gesture. But, it seems “timely.”

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One thought on “When Time Stands Still

  1. Of course – any post that includes the title of a Rush song gets my attention.

    But this also suggested to me some wise advice from a former director, Paul Levine from Morgenthaler, who said “You have 10,000 days left. What are you going to do with them?”

    For those of us that live to metrics…it puts it in perspective.

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