Changed perception of time
It took me a week to open my birthday gifts this year. I just put them on the bottom shelf after I got them, and I didn’t even bother with unpacking. That was strange behavior from me, even though I don’t particularly celebrate birthdays (and New Year’s) I always enjoy getting presents. What was really strange was that I purposely avoided thinking about my birthday and the time itself this year. I even checked my blog from a year ago — and there were a couple of entries about the passage of time written by me. And this year — nothing, not even a cursory glance at the passing year of my life.
Well, the gifts are finally unpacked and new shirts are going right into a rotation as my office wear, books are added to my reading list and I might get to them sometime this year. And I finally allowed myself to think about time and how my perception of time had changed since I regained control over my life — and control over my time as well.
On a short scale, time just flies by. There are not enough hours in a day to do what I want. Of course, I could try to squeeze in some more activities, but I intentionally avoid overextending myself and possibly getting overtired. I could, for example, cut down on naps — but why? I enjoy them and my body needs them, so they will be on my daily schedule. Six hours of sleep could be enough for me, but I function better with seven (or eight). And I enjoy sleeping, so there is no changing that.
On a larger scale, time slows down. I think back to what I did two months ago and am surprised that it actually happened in February. It seems like I was doing that months and months ago. I feel this way mostly because in those two months, I’ve done so much that I could divide that into half a year of normal work. And I still had time for rest and frequently to do literally nothing. I accepted the fact that I cannot and will not do everything I want in my life, but doing something (and enjoying it) is better than doing nothing. And would you believe it — when not drinking or recuperating from a hangover, I suddenly can fit so many things into my schedule. And then actually do them!
On an even large scale, time becomes an abstract and incomprehensible idea. The passage of generations, the changing landscape of physical features, and changes in society and people over the eons are beyond my understanding. The passage of time limits us to a defined existence with a terminating point coming the same way for everybody. There is nothing permanent — no deeds or monuments or riches will last forever. I wish those who are in the process of changing history and, by doing this, hurting and killing and taking away the hope of others would understand that. They will soon become a footnote in a book somewhere, and then not even that. It is good to remember that this quote: for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return (Genesis 3:19) is true for every single one of us.