A Gift Of Time


January 10, 2011
Nogal House
Indian Divide, New Mexico

A Gift of Time (For Candy and Stacy)

Just a moment ago, as I took pause from the effort of containing the dust and ashes that come with burning wood, I was reminded of the gift of time my two dearest friends have provided me. I was on my knees by the stove, dust pan in hand, when I stopped to gaze out the open door of my cabin, catching the soft glow of the morning light as it filtered in the doorway. There is a particular essence to the first light of dawn that is lost in the brilliance of the breaking day. Once the gentle glow of the sun crests the hill it becomes full daylight and brings with it all the demands of our lives.   Only the dawn is our own.

It is my habit to allow such instances to take my full attention. I set down the whisk broom and breathed in the cool morning air, thanking God for all the blessings he has provided me and taking the time to access them. Time is such a precious commodity and one which I have been afforded ample measures of these last two years. The credit goes to the opportunities that were offered to me by two women I count amongst my dearest friends. It might have been far different if not for them but I took a chance and was rewarded in return.

There are times in our lives when we have a choice as to what the future will hold. If we dare to sacrifice security to follow our dreams, to grasp the precious moment for all it is worth, we discover new opportunities. Even as I was savoring the rare freedom of receiving my “Thank you for not working check” on a weekly basis I was offered two part time jobs. Candy asked if I wanted to assist her with some ranch work and then Stacy offered another, measuring water wells across the county and far to the west. I took them both. Even though neither held any long term guarantees and paid little more than my unemployment benefits, which I might still be drawing, they promised both pleasure and adventure. They also afforded me the time and freedom to do as I please and the rare chance to enjoy such moments such as these.

Time. How rarely we have the chance to do as we wish with our days, and our weeks are committed to full time jobs. Our weekends are devoted to our chores and perhaps a brief and much needed respite. Excepting our vacations we so rarely have a series of days to pursue the things we most wish to do, yet here I sit. Work I do, and work I shall, but at this very moment I can choose and I have been reminded by the sweet caress of the morning light of just how precious these moments truly are! Sunlight fills the room and the warmth of the woodstove hold back the chill of the winter winds. The ravens make their daily circuit over the house as I sip my morning tea. As if in answer to the wonder I am feeling I watch as the raven assaults a hawk who has drifted too close to his territory. The hawk flies on unhurried, unimpressed but offering no resistance, he has other places to go, and all he has is time.

4 responses to “A Gift Of Time”

  1. Jody Solome says :

    I for one am thrilled that Cathie persevered and left the rolls of the “Thank you for not working” crowd. How much easier it would have been to acquiesce to that. instead she chose gritty work, regimen, self reliance and above all her beloved adventure-in other words her true self. And along with that her devotion to witness and chronicle her forays “across the county and far to the west” which streams into a remarkable story. I have been privileged to read it’s cohesive form, and it is splendid. Thank you Candy and Stacy, and Cathie-you are more than a woman.

    • cathieeisen says :


      Thank you for your comments and support, I am more than priviledged to have made a freind such as yourself. It brings such meaning and perspective to share my adventure with someone who has lived the life I was destined to live but chose to flee from instead. The richness of your experiences equal my own and I feel as if we are like the center of a see saw weighted the same from both ends, that sweet spot if you will where it strikes the prefect balance.

      Thank You! Cathie

      • Jody Solome says :

        I agree Cathie! Though our paths were different, our journey was the same. In the reading of, and picturing you there, measuring your wells in the area of the VLA, I had a vivid full color memory (from a distance) of us ‘flying’ ever further west in our rail car laughing and sharing, the beautiful countryside racing by. Oh, that we can suspend time like that! But then I believe you do often, and diligently record same to share your love story with life for us all. Thank you Cathie for being its witness and voice.

      • cathieeisen says :


        Your comments are so appreciated and I am again flattered that you have taken the time to read and reflect on my words. Over the last couple of years my life has in many ways distanced itself from the freedom and spontaneity I so reveled in while I was living and writing my book and you have reminded me of the necessity to incorporate the joy and peace I was surrounded by during that adventure. The effort to take the book to the next level where it can be shared, as well as the necessity of a steady income has taken me back along the path I have so tried to avoid!I am now realigning my priorities! Thank you!

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