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cookieman's avatar

Does the passage of time ever overwhelm you?

Asked by cookieman (38038points) April 1st, 2012 from iPhone

I came across a box of old photos today and began flipping through them. Photos of my family and my wife’s from the 70s, 80s, and 90s.

It was a nice trip down memory lane until I realized that almost everyone in the photos were now dead, or elderly. Babies (in the photos) are now married, with children.

Meanwhile, I still feel like “me” (if ya know what I mean). Then it hit me, “where have all the years gone?!”

It was suddenly very overwhelming to me. Have you ever felt this way?

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17 Answers

wundayatta's avatar

Oh, that has happened to me so much, I don’t even notice it any more. Time is always flying by. Perhaps it comes with the territory of being 50 plus. Suddenly, lots of people you once knew are dead. Your kids have kids (unless you started late, like we did), or your neighbor’s kids have kids. Retirement is a decade away. Far too close.

But what can you do? Except try to preserve documents so it doesn’t get lost in case anyone is ever interested. I’ve been doing that. But my backup drive just got dropped on the floor and died. So much for that plan. Need to start over.

Otherwise, I got stuff to do. No time to be overwhelmed yet. My kids still need to get through high school. Hopefully that will keep me young. I was out playing frizbee with my youngest today.

ninjacolin's avatar

Consistently an outstanding phenomenon in my mind.

augustlan's avatar

Oh, yeah. It makes me feel quite panicky when it does, too. I still have so much to do!

ragingloli's avatar

Of course not. I am a Timelord.

Blackberry's avatar

Maybe when I’m older. No one significant in my circle of family or friends has died yet.

Hawaii_Jake's avatar

I don’t know whether I’m overwhelmed at times or not, but I know I have trouble believing that 1970 was 42 years ago, 1980 was 32 years ago, and 1990 was 22 years ago.

I just finished performing in a play with a lot of college kids, and my jacket and tie I wore as a costume, my own clothes, were older than any of them. Come to think of it, that overwhelmed me when I figured it out, so I can answer yes to your question. I get overwhelmed by the passage of time.

cookieman's avatar

You are a lucky man @Blackberry. One day I started counting how many family and friends have died in my life. I stopped counting at twenty.

@augustlan: Yes, I’ve had that same feeling.

@Hawaii_Jake: No kidding. The 80s feel like yesterday sometimes. 32 years?! Christ!

@wundayatta: For sure. My 9-year-old keeps me feeling young generally. In fact, that’s part of the problem. I perpetually feel 25. Meanwhile everyone else is getting old or up and dying.

@ninjacolin: How come?

blueiiznh's avatar

Absolutely. I have so much more to accomplish before I hit 120.

The looking at old photo’s is nostalgic and can kick that feeling in. The growing up of children will do an extra number. But the one that kicked my butt on the passage of time was when my Father passed away recently. That was the one that kicked it into overwhelming and has left me reflecting many things for me.

ninjacolin's avatar

@cprevite I dunno.. it feels like time keeps everything real.. a pause in time would mean in-existence. And there just doesn’t seem to be any pauses. The shadows in the daylight are always creeping along. It’s sooooooooo constant and unchanging and at risk of being considered boring and predictable if I can just get passed the awe of it.

Pandora's avatar

Its not pictures but wasted lives that does that to me. When I see a child I once held in my arms or had innocent conversations with, grown and either in jail or sick because of drugs or has grown to be a thief or mentally all messed up. That is when I feel the passage of time. I wonder how on earth did this child who seemed to hold so much possiblility in their tiny hands end up here? I guess it just makes me feel old because they seem so much older (used up) in such a short time.

Linda_Owl's avatar

Yes, it does.

rojo's avatar

“Everybody’s so different
I’m still the same.”
Joe Walsh

ZEPHYRA's avatar

Yes, going on so fast I’ve lost track of it. I see that the years whizz by yet I feel that yesterday is so close. The only way it hits home is when students I knew as little kids come up to me in the street and greet me. I see before me a young man/woman with familiar eyes. When they introduce themselves….it HITS me!

MollyMcGuire's avatar

Yes. Today, April 1, was a day of reflection for me as it is the birthday of someone very dear to me who I lost some years ago. I can hardly believe I have even survived. Some days I barely do.

josie's avatar

Sure. The passage of time, and it’s first cousin, Mortality, is a tough issue for reasoning creatures. But then again, nobody gets younger as time goes by, so it is healthy to accept it and use the time available. There is only one non renewable resource (no matter what the environmentalists say) and that is time.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

Yes but only during moments like you had. It’s a little kick in the pants to catch up with friends, knock some stuff off the bucket list and to savor the good parts of each day.

BBawlight's avatar

No, because to me time is only here to help us be more organized. Thinking about the concept of time is stupid to me. All it is is the revolution of the Earth around the Sun, and the rotation of Earth around its axis. Humans created it, so it can’t be all that abstract.

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