I don’t have a complete handle on this, but for one thing I think the things to which we have the closest or deepest personal connection, do fly by in time faster than those which are tangential to our living. While I do not have children of my own I have heard parents say again and again how quickly time has gone by since a child was born.
On the other hand time flies, flees, or fujits, in extreme slow motion when we’re standing or sitting by, watching time move. Think about standing in front of the microwave watching for one minute to pass by to reheat your cup of tea or coffee. Or consider the end of a basketball game – true I think of either professional or college basketball. Those last 60 seconds can last for twenty minutes! A few months ago I bought an electric toothbrush at the suggestion of a dental hygienist. It is programmed to run for two minutes. Do you know how long two minutes can be when you’re brushing your teeth? I have not once made it through those two full minutes.
I’ve been thinking about the passage of time a lot lately, I suspect because I am aware of getting older. There are times in my childhood that stand out clearly in my memory – both disappointing times when I felt as though I let someone down, and happy times as well; these were times that made deep impressions on me. I had a childhood friend who was my very best friend. Her family moved away when we were in the 7th grade but we connected through high school and college and then every 20 years or so as adults. When we did get together as adults, it was as though no time had fled at all. She died several years ago and I still long for her presence in my life.
As a retired person, time is something I have in ways in which it was not so readily available previously. I am not wholly confident I am making good use of it in terms of productivity – whatever that might mean in a life of retirement. I do continue to invest time in relationships which enrich my life immeasurably. I would not change that.
It does seem that time passes by more quickly as we age – we have heard this said by the generations before us. I can only hope that the meaning of that swift passage of time is that we are fully engaged in life, having deep personal connections, day by day.