“Understanding True Love Is Often A Matter of Time…” 

Editorial by Robert Kirwan

   One day recently I was going through my old year book from Lively High School when I came across a photo of my Grade 13 English Teacher. It brought back memories of how everyone in our class hated this man. He was always so demanding and hard on us at the time. It took an enormous amount of work and effort to get a mark of 60 or 70% in his class.
   As I looked at his picture, I also recalled that there have been many times in my life when I thought back to those days in that Grade 13 English class and I realized that this man taught me a lot more than how to read and write. He taught me that I could achieve far more than I thought I was capable of through hard work and self discipline. I didn’t realize it at the time, but he was actually doing me a favour and was really acting out of love for all of us in the class.  He knew what we would need in order to compete in the world that lay ahead of us. And he forced us to reach beyond ourselves in order to come close to our true potential.
   Whenever I read the following story, I think about my old Grade 13 English teacher. In fact, I think I will dedicate this editorial to all the former students of mine who thought I was being too hard on them when I demanded a level of excellence of which they thought they were incapable.
   Once upon a time there was an island where all the feelings lived; happiness, sadness, knowledge, and all the others, including love. One day it was announced to all of the feelings that the island was going to sink to the bottom of the ocean, so all of the feelings prepared their boats to leave. Love was the only one that stayed. She wanted to preserve the island paradise until the last possible moment. When the island was almost totally under, Love decided it was time to leave. She began looking for someone to ask for help.
   Just then Richness was passing by in a grand boat. Love asked, "Richness, can I come with you on your boat?" Richness answered, “I’m sorry, but there is a lot of silver and gold on my boat and there would be no room for you anywhere."
   Then Love decided to ask Vanity for help who was passing in a beautiful vessel. Love cried out, "Vanity, help me please."  "I can't help you", Vanity said, “You are all wet and will damage my beautiful boat."
   Next, Love saw Sadness passing by. Love said, “Sadness, please let me go with you."  Sadness answered, "Love, I'm sorry, but, I just need to be alone now."
   Then, Love saw Happiness. Love cried out, " Happiness, please take me with you."  But Happiness was so overjoyed that he didn't hear Love calling to him. Love began to cry.
   Then, she heard a voice say, "Come Love, I will take you with me." It was an older person. Love felt so blessed and grateful that she forgot to ask the elder his name. When they arrived on land the elder went on his way.
   Love realized how much she owed the elder. Love then found Knowledge and asked, "Who was that elder person who helped me?"
   "It was Time", Knowledge answered.
   "But why did Time help me when no one else would?” Love asked.
   Knowledge smiled and with deep wisdom and sincerity, answered, "Because only Time is capable of understanding how great Love is."

   Isn’t this so true? 

   Most of us, at some point in our life, have looked back and understood that we were actually treated with great love and compassion by people who, at the time, seemed to be anything but loving. The teacher in elementary school who was so hard on you and with whom you were always getting into trouble; a parent who would never let you stay out as late as your friends; a coach who was always on your case to try harder; or, even a Grade 13 English teacher.
   We have all encountered many people who demonstrate their love in different, strange ways which are disguised until time takes away that disguise.  Sometimes the people who give in to all of your demands, flood you with lavish gifts and money, and let you do whatever you want do not really love you at all but are merely responding for some ulterior motive.
   Often times the people who seem to be the hardest and most demanding on you are the ones who really, truly love you with all of their heart. 

   All too often, it takes TIME for us to understand how great that Love really was.
   Have a good week!


The Private Practice of
Robert Kirwan, OCT., B.A. (Math), M.A. (Education)
Independent Education, Training & Career Development Consultant