Time is a strange thing. Time alters the perception of things. In passing, it can make things appear less painful, or more significant, depending on one’s state of mind. But what is really happening when time passes?
I feel that time you spend with other people means the longer you spend with them the more intense that relationship becomes, or at least seems to become. We all have friends we’ve known forever, and regardless of how often or how little you see each other, when you do it feels like you’ve never been apart. They will always be your friend. Or enemy.
Time not spent with someone has significance too. My daughter graduates from middle school tomorrow, and I am sad. Not because it’s the end of an era, well, maybe a little. But I feel this event should feel more like a rite of passage, a memorable occurrence in her life. But it isn’t, not for me, not for her. She has only spent a few months at that school. I don’t know more than a fleeting 3 or 4 people, maybe 2 or 3 parents, again, fleetingly. How different would this event be had we stayed in California…. I would be holding another parent’s hand, we’d cry together, remember our kids’ earlier school years.
Like everyone around me tomorrow, I will get emotional at tomorrow’s ceremony, but I will be emotional not because of what is happening but because of what is not happening. I will feel empty, bereft. I will feel like I’ve been cheated out of the real thing. And I will feel my daughter’s pain, while she is going through the same emotions. I know she is feel the same way about this. Every second of that ceremony, she will think of who she should be sitting next to, who she should be pulling faces at. Tomorrow is going to be tough. I wish it were different. For her, for me. It’s really hitting me, what we’ve done, what we’re missing.
And while the logical part of me is telling me it’s just a stage in life, a meaningless event that’ll soon be forgotten, the emotional part of me is grieving.