Remember when you reached your fifth birthday?
The world expanded.
Then, fifth grade. How’d that happen?
Then, a whole high school experience. (Another five.)
And, college was four, but the year after might as well have counted because we all remember how little we did during that one unless we got married, which we didn’t.
But, our whole lifetime up until that point was just a handful of five year increments.
* * * * *
The real illusion of human life is that we’ve got decades.
But, all we really have are five years.
Five at a time.
When we were young, five years literally separated us from anybody who wasn’t the same age. As we aged, five years ceased to mean anything between two people.
And, the older we get, five years means even less. Something that happened five years ago feels as though it happened last month.
But, off we go with life, thinking we’ve got an endless vista of consecutive decades in which to play.
We can blow a year like nothing, just getting from summer through winter to spring.
And, then another.
* * * *
I figure I’ve spent most of the last five years on Facebook. A blood curdling realization.
Social media has compressed the files of our lives. And, we need to escape before it is too late.
We need to read a book for a solid day, start a drawing and finish it, learn a whole Chopin Polonaise, reorganize the house, plant perennials and sweet potatoes, take a course in astronomy, go to Europe again, and plan every day as densely and richly as we possibly can.
There isn’t a moment to lose. There isn’t.
© Ruth Ann Scanzillo