Maybe it’s a matter of perspective – the longer I’m alive, it seems, the faster time goes by. I remember summers seeming infinitely long when I was little. Now that I’m in my thirties, it seems to me that the season is rushing past before I can even get outside to enjoy it. I suppose it didn’t help that June was so miserable, cold and rainy this year that it felt like a Vancouver February, but I don’t think that’s entirely it. As far as I can tell, as I get older I gain a sense of time perspective that I didn’t have as a child. When you’re only seven years old, a year is a very, very long time. When you reach 27 it seems a lot shorter because you’ve had so many more of them to live through.
It makes me wonder if I’ll feel like a year is a day, if I manage to live to 90.
Time really is relative, and our perception of it is the only thing that matters.
On top of all this revelation that I’m not a kid anymore is the shock that hits my system when I look at Lyra. She turned two years old last month. I can’t remember what she looked like as a newborn – my perception of who she is is based entirely on what she looks like now. If I look at pictures I can see it, but seeing her grow every day removes the feeling that time is passing and she’s changing. Every so often it hits me, though: I see her lying in her bed and taking up way more of it than I remember; I watch her playing on a slide or copying other girls she sees on monkey bars; or she comes out with a fully formed sentence instead of toddler-speak; she’s not a baby anymore. Everyone who’s had kids tells you it goes fast, and it does. It really, truly does.
I remember this face:
But when I think about my little girl I don’t see that face… I see this one:
Give it a few more months, and that won’t be the face in my mind anymore either.
Time ticks away merrily, and I don’t notice till it’s passed. I’m okay with that, but it’s always a surprise somehow when I notice how much Lyra has changed. Gradual change just can’t be observed when you’re watching every possible second. It’s easier, I think, to notice the changes when you’re not so close.
But let’s be honest… I wouldn’t miss this for anything.