Blog: The persistence of time

Salvador Dali
The persistence of Memory

A moment. The assistant behind the desk smiled warmly at me as he handed me a card. “The doctor will see you again in four weeks.”

A moment. Ding. A text on my phone. “How long until you start school?”

A moment. See relatives in the summer. “What do you do when you graduate? You only have two years left.”

These remarks were normal for me; I never gave them a second thought. I believe that you cannot truly understand the presence of time in your life until something happens to you that makes you see it differently. It’s likely to happen to all of us at some point, and we’ll never see it coming. This happened to me recently. One day we seek the future. The next day we see that we have ignored the time we are in now.

A moment. You understand what time means, in a close call that changes your life. Maybe for the best.

Most of us spend time in a way it’s not meant to: waiting. We wait for things to happen. Planning, of course, is good. But to always live in what is to come is to miss what is ahead.

A moment. Lying in bed with a baggy t-shirt and boxer shorts. It’s late afternoon and the last rays of sunshine of the day stream in through my open windows as the unseen thunder announces a cozy night ahead. A gray cat sleeps next to me, purring, dreaming of something I’ll never know. The soundtrack to my favorite video game is playing on TV as I type this. I feel the plush of the blanket warming my feet and the silent drip, drip, drip of stray droplets hitting the bathroom sink.

It’s not easy to live right here, in this. It’s one of the hardest things I’ve done: not living in the past, not in the future. But I try. And, in this moment where I am, that is enough.