This morning I had a mild panic attack. Nothing major. Really minor, in fact. Nothing new, either. Same old worry about time flying by. You know how they say too much of a good thing can be kind of bad? Its true, sometimes. I’ve had such a wonderful four+ months of freedom and no ticking clocks, major life-threatening deadlines or the like. So much so that I’ve been stretching my free-time out, nice and long. Pushing essential jobs as far into the corners as I can, so I can focus on the fun stuff.
The truth is, all the fun in the world cannot keep the heavy-duty life stuff away forever. I’m talking doing my bank work on time. Getting my own damned printer so I can print my own invoices. Cleaning out my fridge before I discover a month-old decaying cream in the back of it. Dusting out the loft so the spiders don’t breed an entire generation in it.
The truth is this is adult stuff. And much as I like to think of myself as orderly, with-it, in-control and rocking my way through life, I’m still kind of getting used to this adult shit. I still need to be reminded to pay my bills. My mother still has to remind me to take my meds (and I still forget, would you believe?) There are days when I can actually just eat a big bowl of chocolate ice cream for lunch and be done with it. I also have the rare but very real urge to not answer work-related calls.
The truth is, after four+ months of freedom, this morning, for the very first time I had the feeling that I am running out of time. It’s a horribly suffocating feeling, like you’re zipping through an open road, and the wind is attacking you with mouthfuls of air you cannot gulp. You want to scream and shout and ask the world to stop, for just one second. Just long enough to catch your breath and get back on again before the craziness of it all resumes.
The days are going by at breakneck speed. I have a set of things I
want need to do and while it feels like I have all the time in the world, the truth is I really don’t. This week is better than sometime this month. Today is better than tomorrow. Now is better than later.
Life has a funny way of throwing these little reality checks at me every now and then. In the most arbit and ridiculous fashion. And since I am all about sharing, I’d have you know that todays edition of the quintessential panic attack was brought on by this song on the radio:
There I was, big blue shades on my face, driving to the office to drop off lunch. The day has gone as per plan, which is to say there was no plan. The afternoon presents no schedule either. I contemplate a lazy lunch, snuggling in bed with my book, and maybe some tea time baking. When smack Justin Timberlake comes on.
Instantly I was transported to 2006. To a time when I didn’t have to worry about spring cleaning on time. Or about eating enough green veggies. Or about bank balances and investments. Or IT returns and bills and receipts. Or making grand plans for the future. And I swear to you, it really feels like a time not so long ago.
Wasn’t I just at Spinn the other day? Dancing with abandon, sneaking back home later than I ought to have, with vodka on my breath and smoke in my hair? Wasn’t I just going about life like there were no real deadlines?
I was. But the truth is, all the fun in life doesn’t take real life, adult shit away. Not for very long at least. Moral of the story? Don’t listen to Justin Timberlake. It has that dangerous effect of making time spin out of control, speeding up and slowing down things all at once. Putting you in panic mode and wanting to get with the program.
But sometimes, just sometimes, it’s good to go back in time. Even if it for just 4 minutes and 40 seconds, because it refreshes your mind about a time when things were less complicated. And it reminds you to trudge on, because time is ticking on. And it sometimes forces you to get moving. Get ahead. Get on with it.