Come on now, children, let’s put on our thinking caps and rose-colored glasses!

Posted on July 18, 2009

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I know people tell me things will change when I’m older. I won’t be as open-minded, my metabolism will suddenly slow down to a slug-like speed at 12:01am on my 30th birthday, that I will no longer have the energy or desire to stay up until 4am, that if I am proud of the fact that I can sometimes out eat any guy I know that I will suddenly wake up with at least another ten points in my BMI if I don’t watch what I eat RIGHT NOW, and that I won’t view love or the person I am with the same way.

The problem is that I feel like I won’t be alive in two years. Not that I’m going to die, or that I have some prophetic feeling that I will die young and I remain fixated on the fact that I don’t have much time. What I mean is that I have absolutely concept or foresight into my life in two years. I don’t have the foggiest idea what it means to live another two years. I don’t have any understand of what it would feel like to live to be 30, 40, 50, and so on. My understanding of time and how long it feels is limited by my own biological age. My only concept of time, of age, of life, of death, is what the point of reference built from a little over two decades.

This, I believe, is the beautiful curse and blessing of the human understanding of time.

We all demand that the other person see time from a different frame of reference, yet I have serious doubts about whether any person can actually begin to understand a frame beyond what they have lived. People my parent’s age either expect me to “Be young, have fun, flirt a lot, play.” Which, is speaking out of the fact that they are reaching mid-life, and have understood the deeply desire to return to childhood, and the wish to live in a simpler state of life and naivety. Or, I, behaving out of my understanding of time for my age, make a few basic statements, and they so quickly pipe up in conversation to correct me and emphasize the importance and weight of where I am in my life. Which, lately seems to be mostly useless, considering I do not have any concept of how the decisions I make right now will effect me when I’m 60, because I’m not 60.

I’m not claiming ignorance, nor am I saying that simply because I have a different understanding of time that I am not responsible for having common sense or that I need to be responsible for my own actions. It’s just that I have the unfortunate opportunity to glean conceptual information from people who have lived longer than I have, I then must make sense of it and make the “best” decision based on such information. Which, is fine and good, but most (if not all) of the life advice conversations I have, or advice that is given but never asked for, always is tinted with time.

That is because we speak out of the time we exist inside of.

It’s the one variable that constantly confuses me, and yet is always demanded of me even though I’m almost sure it’s supposed to confuse me.

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