Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Time is Right

When I worked onboard the Schooner Ernestina  running educational programs, we had a group of high school students come onboard with a mission to promote diversity and equality.  They left the vessel after an empowering 4 days and left the crew with t-shirts that had the MLK quote "the time is always right to do what is right."  This t-shirt has long ago been relegated to 'work' status in our home, but the quote sticks in my mind and has a way of rattling around in there.  On some days I love the choices it helps me make, and on other days I grumble to myself as I reluctantly 'do what is right.'  The best part of the quote is that it can be taken out of context and applied to anything: should I hang the laundry or just toss it in the dryer (even when I know it saves, money, energy and the environment to hang my clothes), should I really walk the compost outside in the cold, or just this once dump it in the trash, should I wash those dishes, or leave them in the sink in the hopes that somehow a little elf will wash them overnight. And then the quote kicks into my head, and 9 times out of 10 the laundry gets hung, the compost taken out, and the dishes washed (but not always). 

Luckily this quote doesn't just apply to getting things done, and even more luckily, what is deemed 'right' is completely up to me.  Today when my brilliant plan for stringing popcorn lasted for all of about 5 minutes and ended with me pulling a large amount on thread out of our dog, and frantically searching for a needle (which she did NOT thankfully eat) I thought of this quote and we put our needles away and happily ate popcorn for 10 minutes and fed the rest to the chickens.  At that time, the right thing to do was remember why we were stringing popcorn in the first place (which of course had much more to do with spending time together and very little to do with decorating our tree). And tonight when Dave was putting the twins to bed and Freja was cooing happily instead of going to sleep, the quote echoed through my head, and for the time I scrapped all those projects I had happily planned for the evening, and just lay on the floor playing with our rapidly growing littlest one. And truly the 'time was right for doing what was right.'

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