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I Had A Scary Thought

me, scared
Sometimes I scare myself …

You know how I talk about time all the … well, all the time?

You know how I say that we don’t get time? As in, we don’t understand it?

And I also say that there are only two times, now and not now?

And there’s more …

There’s also the thing where we think we can assemble a vintage Studebaker from boxes of parts in an hour or so, but we are pretty certain that filling out our income tax is going to take the rest of our life and the longer we put it off the more time we’ll have gotten to spend on important things before we give in and throw the rest of our lives away on filling out that form.

That is to say, we have a very poor understanding of how long it takes to do certain things, the ones that excite us we think we can do in no time at all and the ones that are going to be painful in that boring way will take forever.

Some say …

Time for people with ADHD is liquid, but that’s not quite right either. A liquid takes up a certain amount of space and doesn’t compress or expand much, enough to break containers maybe but it doesn’t actually explode when that happens.

You can pressurize a liquid by freezing it, but to really put it under pressure you need to add a gas and put that under pressure in the same space that the liquid is in and then you need to put the egress for the liquid on the bottom of …

Wait, I’ve wandered off topic here, I’m supposed to be talking about time. Time is more like a gas, like the gas you’d pressurize a liquid with.

A Gas?

Yeah, gasses can be compressed or expanded with little effort, and apparently so can time in our minds.

So we don’t really get how time is for others.

And that thought has comforted me for a while now.


It has comforted me because it explains why I am the way I am in instances where my behavior is at odds with that of the neuro-typical population.

I don’t understand how long things take, and I don’t understand how long I’ve spent doing some things and how little time I’ve spent doing others.

And that explains a lot.

So, why am I scared?

It occurred to me that I’m watching my life go by and I have no concept of time.

And that made me think that maybe, just maybe, time for us is going so much faster than it does for others.

And I’m thinking …

That that really seems unfair.

If my life is a haphazard collection of accidents, and missed appointments, and broken promises due to forgotten conversations, and other negative things, held together by bits of fun stuff, and the hard things seem to take a long time and the fun things flicker by in a blur, and my whole life is going at ten or more times the perceived speed of life for NTs ….

What the hell did I do in a past life to deserve this??? I must have been one bad person.

Or maybe, instead of being a bad person, I just told everyone what I was thinking, like I just did.

I Had A Scary Thought

Kelly Babcock

I was born in the city of Toronto in 1959, but moved when I was in my fourth year of life. I was raised and educated in a rural setting, growing up in a manner I like to refer to as free range. I live on the traditional lands of the Chippewas of Nawash in an area where my family history stretches back 6 or 7 generations and my First Nations friend's families go back hundreds of generations. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 50 and have been both struggling with the new reality and using my discoveries to make my life better. I am a freelance writer and I write two blogs here at Psych Central, one about living with ADHD and one that is a daily positive affirmation that acts as an example of finding the good in as much of my life as I possibly can.

Find out more about me on my website: writeofway.

email me at ADHD Man

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APA Reference
Babcock, K. (2019). I Had A Scary Thought. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 22, 2020, from


Last updated: 29 May 2019
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