When people live to be senior citizens, so many things change, their beliefs, priorities, health, attitude and even finances. Life has taught us many lessons, though I am positive we did not learn them all.
We all started out with similarities to those of our peers. We could not wait to turn thirteen years old. That meant we were going to be a teenager. Little did we know about puberty, pimples and hormones. *shudder*
Then, our next milestone was sixteen. It was almost more than we could bear to wait until then to drive a car. At sixteen, the reality of that responsibility was barely able to take root in the fertile, intelligent minds we thought to possess. It was only after we had a wreck or lost our peers to a fatality, that we realized the *toy* we were driving, was in reality, a lethal weapon.
Then it was prom time. We prayed fervently, someone would ask us. It was worse than playing games as a child where each team leader chooses until they run our of contestants, and you were the *last* one picked..
There was so much emphasis on being *asked* that we were oblivious to the facts, of the expense it would cost our parents, or the pain our friends or our self would experience, if they were not *asked*. We did not even take into consideration, the fact, that if for some reason we could not or would not go, it was not a wound unto death. After all, in our state of self-absorption, we were worth the sacrifice at any cost. Weren’t we?
And then the wedding, the children and our *problems* morphed to a new level.
Of all the tragedies that I have seen and experienced, the most sobering ones, are looking into the scared, soulful eyes of my children and/or loved ones in a hospital bed or even worse, a coffin.
Our sense of reality matures dramatically in those moments. No longer are we concerned with trivial things. Our priorities take on a completely different personality. Health and life move quickly to the top of the list.
In our latter years, when faced with our own death, our focus is not in the dying, but in the worry of what will happen to our children when we are gone. As parents, we never stop worrying them. Who will help them? Who will advise them? How will they survive? I have heard many people discuss this over the years and now I find myself struggling with this sector of reality.
I have morosely considered many options and each time, they are weighed in the balance and come out wanting. So, with a mixture of great regret and relief, I have discovered yet another thing in life I have absolutely no control over. It is, “Beyond the grave, I cannot micromanage life for my loved ones.” Every one of them will have to face their own demons, make their own future and live their own life!