Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
For Your Journal: Writing Prompt

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Do you keep a journal – or wish you could get one started? Read this prompt from Literary Mama reader Rachel Macy Stafford. Then, open a notebook and write for 10 minutes. Don’t worry about grammar or punctuation – just write.


Wishing Away Time

I spent much of my life wishing away time. On one too many occasions, these hasty lines came from my lips:

“I can't wait for school to start.”

“I wish the warmer weather would finally get here.”

“When is it going to be Friday? This week is killing me.”

“I can’t wait for her to be able to ride in the booster seat.”

“I look forward to the day she stops sucking her thumb.”

To put it bluntly, I wished time away. But that all changed one day as I watched my child intently studying a dandelion she picked in our backyard.

“If you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go?” I asked curiously, anticipating what my then four-year-old daughter would say. I expected her response to involve seashells, princesses, cotton candy, or Toy Story characters. But surprisingly, it didn’t involve any of that.

“Picking dandelions with you,” my child replied without a moment’s hesitation.

Out of any place in the world she could dream of being, my child chose to be right where she was in that very moment.

It was so simple. So obvious. But most of the time, so incredibly difficult.

Because in this fast-paced, task-driven, media-saturated world, slowing down takes effort. Allowing oneself to simply be in the moment at hand is a rare and beautiful gift. How easily I forget that there is no guarantee that tomorrow will even come. Or that tomorrow will be as wonderful as it is today.

Thanks to the wisdom of a child, things are different now. Instead of wishing time away, I find myself hoping time will stand still so I can savor it just a little more.


Journal Prompt: In what ways do you wish away time? In what ways do you savor time? How has the concept of time changed as you’ve gotten older?


Do YOU have a writing prompt to share with Literary Mama readers? Send your 150- to 300-word narrative and associated writing prompt to lmblogcontact (at) literarymama (dot) com. We'd love to read your ideas!


Rachel Macy Stafford is a certified special education teacher with a Master’s Degree in education and ten years of experience working with parents and children. In December 2010, this life-long writer felt compelled to share her journey to let go of distraction and grasp what really matters by creating the blog Hands Free Mama. Using her skills as a writer, teacher, and encourager, Rachel provides readers with simple, non-intimidating, and motivating methods to let go of distraction and connect with their loved ones. Rachel’s work has been featured in USA Today,, The Huffington Post, and Reader’s Digest. Her blog currently averages one million visitors a month. Her first book, Hands Free Mama, recently became available.

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