I have to admit, when I was growing up I had no idea what this really meant. It was possibly the lack of every day mending in our home. The idea of fixing something quickly so a tear doesn’t get worse was a foreign concept. The only thing my mother usually repaired were my jeans. On those she used patches, so the bigger the tear the better as far as she was concerned. I didn’t truly understand until I started cross-stitching and later knitting, that often doing a quick immediate repair can save A LOT of time and effort later.
When touring around Disney parks, I have to remind myself of this adage. I don’t like to stop, but sometimes I short stop early on prevents a longer stop later. Things like uncomfortable shoes, needs for snacks & drinks, breaks from rides, and (yes) rips & tears all should get immediate attention. But, as I said, I don’t like to stop. I have found, however, the consequences are dire. Walking around a Disney park with blisters on my feet while a preschooler has a meltdown due to low blood sugar teaches hard lessons. We have learned that we must periodically take a break to watch a show or a parade or both. While we wait, we check feet and shoes, replace batteries as needed, eat snacks, and drink water whether we want it or not. We are all better off taking a short time to care for ourselves and our needs rather than pushing through and making ourselves miserable.
Again, this isn’t always something I can remember when I get home. The same principle applies in everyday life. Taking care of ourselves isn’t something we should do just on vacation. A half hour nap before washing the dishes may seem indulgent, but it might just be what we need to keep going. Sometimes a short break to do what is needed might be just what we need to avoid a larger problem later. A stitch in time, a break in time, a word in time could all solve a problem before it has a chance to grow.