Friday, December 10, 2010

Explanation Of Clocks

I clicked on my car radio just in time to catch The Writer's Almanac with Garrison Keillor (on NPR.) He was sharing some tidbits about Emily Dickinson since today is her birthday. 

Emily Dickinson didn't learn to tell time until she was fifteen years old because she was afraid to tell her father that she never understood his explanation of clocks.

If only she'd said, "Dad, can you explain that again?"

It made me think of Claire and how she won't *ask her math teacher to review something that feels unclear.
I said, "Honey, don't be afraid to go up and ask Mrs. Hegarty if you don't understand something. That's why they're called teachers."
"Mom! I can't go up in front of everybody and ask. Then everyone will know that I need help. We're doing stuff with percentages and everyone around me seems to get it."
"I must've been absent that day."Claire said.

I get it. Seems the more I open myself up to new things, the more I don't know. So what. I'm letting go of those old worries. How's this for a bumper sticker?

I have no idea. Can you help me?

In honor of The Belle of Amherst's birthday, I've decided to embrace my learning curves as opportunities to raise my hand and ask for help. I may have mastered the art of clock reading, but oh, there's so much I don't know.

Excuse me? Would you mind going over that again?

Read: If You Have A Need/ Dec. 9, 2010


  1. one of my favorite ED poems (your post made me think of her sentiment, going through hard times, not knowing exactly what to do, that makes you stronger):

    THEY say that “time assuages”,—
    Time never did assuage;
    An actual suffering strengthens,
    As sinews do, with age.
    Time is a test of trouble,
    But not a remedy.
    If such it prove, it prove too
    There was no malady.