Music and the passage of time

October 18, 2022

This summer, on a drive home from our cabin with my boys, we listened to a music playlist they’d created years prior. They’d kept updating it year after year, adding new songs to the playlist while retaining the older ones. There’s about 40 songs.

I remember when many of these songs were first played by them. They each mark distinct points in their childhood; what they were going through, friends they had and where they were.

As we rounded yet another corner on the windy road home, I felt a deep sense of grief and appreciation for my wife and kids.

Grief for the time that had too quickly, passed by. Appreciation that I had been given the opportunity to be a part of their lives.

Kids in Tombstone Park

When our kids were young, it felt like the hours were taking forever. On some days, in the hardest moments I willed them to grow up so we could escape the suffering.

Now I look back and wish I could start all over again. Not to do anything differently (okay, maybe a few things) but simply to relive those experiences and be more mindful of how fast the years go by.

How rapidly children grow up, and at the same time, how swiftly we age.

Our daughter graduated from high school this summer. It was also her final year of a dance program she’d been part of since age 4.

In June, 14 years later, we watched her from afar socialize with friends. She was sitting on our backyard deck with her dance program classmates laughing, eating pizza, enjoying the evening sun and listening to music. Music I’d heard her play over the years on the home stereo, on her phone and in the car.

The time goes by, so quickly.

We see colours, hear sounds and feel textures.

This summer I became acutely aware of what’s not a new sense, but sure feels like one: through music, the passage of time.

Music that is, was and will remain part of our lives as a family and our memories made together.