Time keeps marching faster

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 25, 2014

“It was Monday, and then it was Friday.”

That’s how my friend Mary Helen often answers the query, “How was your week?”

“They were in kindergarten, and then they graduated,” may be a better description of what the parents of this year’s graduates are feeling today. Regardless, time passes in a seeming instant – Monday, then Friday; kindergarten, then high school is over.

As I looked at graduation pictures, interviewed graduating seniors and talked to a number of parents this week, I couldn’t help but remember how grown up each of us felt when we lifted our hands and turned our own tassels. Now, I look at graduates and think, not meaning to be offensive, “Just babies.”

It’s the same thing I feel when I look at beautiful Elena, the child for whom my childhood friend Melissa asked me to be a godmother. That sweet baby girl, whose birth a few short years ago prompted me to rush out and buy pink, pink, pink, will be a bride in three weeks. She and the groom have been inseparable since their first date, and are a charming couple.

How, I wonder, did she grow up so fast? And yet, though grown, does she realize how young she really is?

She thought I was joking when I told her I already have spent more time shopping for a dress for her wedding than I did for my own. I was not. I was in less hurry to marry that most of my peers, but at 26, my parents were starting to worry a little bit. Now I look back and think, “So young.” Honey had passed the 40-mark by then. He too, thinks of those days with the same sentiment: “When I was that age ….”

I am neither mourning my youth, nor talking about regrets. I echo my 76-year-old father when I say, “Today is the best day of my life.”

Rather, I am wondering where my week went; how the school year passed so quickly; and how those children grew up when we weren’t watching.

And I am reminded of an explanation of the passage of time.

When you are 5 and waiting for Christmas, that year is 20 percent of your life. When you are 40-something, it’s more like 2 percent.

It is Monday and then it is Friday; kindergarten, then graduation.

Now sweet, sweet summertime, with Christmas is just around the corner.