Poyer: Let’s talk time

Columnist Sarah Poyer ruminates on the passage of time. 

Sarah Poyer

Everyone is aware of time. It controls our entire lives, dictates when and how we do things. We all have the same 24 hours in the day and 365 days in the year, but at the same time, it feels like we never have enough of it.

As I grow older, time seems to be the most fleeting thing. It is racing through the world, spinning circles around me, and I never can catch up. Most of the time, it does not bother me. I adapt and adjust to this fleeting phantom. In recent years, I have witnessed this more and more. I would love to figure out how to catch time and slow it down, even just for a moment.

A few years ago, my grandpa passed away. He and I were pretty close, although we did not get to see each other too much. Yet, when I heard the news of his passing, I was genuinely devastated. I had shared 18 years with my Grandpa Hio, as I called him, but it was not enough. I wished I could hear his voice one last time, hug him and bake with him once more. It felt like he was just this flash of being in my life. Time moved too fast.

Time once again moved too fast for me in August 2020. My grandpa had been in hospice for over a year. We knew his “time was limited,” as our family had frequently heard over and over. Since Grandpa had been in hospice for over a year, you would have thought we would have been fine when he passed because we had so long to prepare. Yet, you would be dead wrong.

I remember that day so vividly. My friend and I were out hiking a trail, and my mom texted me to ask what I was doing. She then asked me to call her, and when I did, she gave me the news: “Grandpa Brown died.” I sat down in the parking lot of the hiking trail and started sobbing. I remember thinking it wasn’t fair — Grandpa was doing fine, and I was supposed to get to see him in just two days. Again, we had known about Grandpa’s time being short for such a long time, yet I felt cheated. I wish I could have listened to him harass me about my tattoos one last time or listened to him talk about his time in the service again.

Earlier this semester, my grandma got placed in hospice care. I was pretty upset when we found out. The day I found out, I sat with one of my best friends whose brother was getting ready to leave for the Marines. We talked about her family’s plan for the last bit of time they had together. She asked me if it was selfish to want more time with him because he had so many people to say goodbye to. I remember looking at her with tears streaking my cheeks and just saying, you can never have enough time, which is a statement I wholeheartedly stand by.

We never have enough time to fully cherish the people we love until it is too late. Every chance you get, take the time to see those you love because it may be the last time you get to hear their voice or hug them. Call your grandparents, aunts or uncles and parents (whatever family you have and love). Humor them and listen to their stories, get to know them. Go on random midnight Perkins runs with your best friends, hammock on Central C ampus, go to bed late but with your heart full of love.

Time is fleeting and never seems to slow down, so we must run and catch up with it in whatever capacity we can. Use your time wisely; spend it with those who make your soul happy. Stay close to those who feel like sunshine, and your passing moments will become cherished memories.