115 Marbles

As we turn the page on the calendar to not only a new month, but a new year, one can’t help but be reminded of the passage of time. As the sayings go, “The older we get the faster time seems to tick away” and “My how time flies when you’re having a good time”.  We also know the anguish of being someplace that we’d rather not be and watching the hands tick slowly on the face of the analogue wall clock or the annoying checking and double checking of our iPhone ~ only to see the digital face remain the same.

It was embedded in the notion of the passage of time and making what time we have count that last week at church the pastor shared a story of a father who determined the number of Saturdays that he had left with his teenage daughter before she headed off to University and filled a jar of marbles. Each Saturday he would transfer a marble from one jar to the next, thus reminding him of the importance of making the most of the time he had left.

It was that story that prompted me to purchase my own two glass jars and fill one of them with 115 marbles.  Why 115 you may be asking???  Well, I have only 115 instructional days left in my current system position as a Learning Supervisor before I transition onto my adventure (principal of a new school in the Northwest end of London). I have truly enjoyed the opportunities that working at a system level have afforded me and I’m incredibly proud of the work that the teams, that I’ve been blessed to work with, have accomplished over the past four years.

So with my time now limited, I’ve committed to make the most of each day that is left in my current role. As the jar of blue and green marbles glistens in the sunlight on my shelf, they are the visual reminder of the decreasing number of days that I have left where my “voice” will be representative of the system.  My final task before I power down my laptop and switch off the lights each night is to physically move a single marble from one jar to the next and take a moment to reflect on the day.  Did I do my best? Have I honoured the voices within the portfolios that I represent?  Am I working purposefully towards building capacity and sustainability? Have I made the most of the day?

As the glass marbles pass from one jar to the next, the reality of my transition from one role to the next will become more and more apparent.

How do you mark the passage of time?

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5 thoughts on “115 Marbles

  1. I can’t help but also think of all the other people who are also affected by those 115 marbles. You almost have the easy road to travel in these next 115 days. Yes you will be busy, there is no doubt, you always are. But you know where you are going and can even talk about it. But in 115 days someone from the system (or they might hire from outside) but regardless, will be taking over your role. But no one knows yet who that is. And in 115 days a whole new staff will be brought together from ……. guess we can’t know that yet either, but in 115 days a number of teachers, EA’s, custodians etc. will have their lives changed. But no one knows who they are yet. But you can’t help but wonder! Really wonder. I wonder how many are asking, will it be me? (and I don’t mean “me” and in me, but me as in “you”! You who are reading this)

  2. You will always be a strong system voice Sue, whether or not you are working at the system level!

  3. Sue,

    Time will fly – I can’t believe how fast this year is passing by. I love the idea of the marble jar. Such a great visual reminder.

    You have done amazing things in your role and I have no doubt that will continue in your new role as well!

    All the best as you make the best of the remaining days before your new adventure begins. Can’t wait to hear more about the planning and developing of the new school community.


  4. What a fantastic idea! It’s a physical reminder to be mindful and reflect on your day. Thank you for all your inspiring blogposts.

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