We spent most of Sunday reminiscing about the old days. Gray's uncle, who is only a few years older than Graham, arrived to spend a day with us before he returns to Scotland. I was reflecting on how, more and more these days, when old friends visit...there is never enough time to talk about the old memories that connect us, shared and apart.
Do you remember when the slogan amongst us was....never trust anybody over 30...? If you do, then you were there during the sixties and early seventies. At the time, living it, I didn't realize I was creating memories...I didn't realize that I would chuckle at myself in later years. In my late teens and early twenties, I thought I would always be the same, right where I was that moment.
But in later years, the angst that was surely present in my early years, is covered with a layer of gold dust. And through the golden mist of time, I see the lessons I was given; I see the work or lack of that I gave in return to learn those lessons. When I look back, during the steep learning curve of my twenties, I see a woman who was headstrong and frightened. I did not understand, then, the importance of balance.
So memories of who I was and who the people were that surrounded me are now tinged with tenderness. We were all struggling so hard to know who we were and what our roles in life were. But the drama played out all by itself...time marched on without us even being aware of it.
Children and responsibilities occurred for most of us; the idea that we were going to change the way the world was going was put on the back burner. But some of us kept the light burning...and the reminders are becoming prevalent.
The baby boomers now have the time to re-discover themselves. And when old friends arrive for visits, inevitably the talk returns to a time when we thought a different way. When we forged a new identity, both for ourselves and the world. Suddenly, then, if we put aside the way our elders thought and believed, we had the freedom to do things our way...never realizing those beliefs were deeply ingrained, and would require true work to temper them.
But we were all changed by an environment that screamed freedom. For Jim, the push was music, for Graham it was rock climbing. Both very spiritual pastimes. Both are well-travelled, experienced in different cultures, which gives one a broader perspective. During our visit, I mostly listened...my life during those years were so different in nature...mostly centred on a young family.
Inevitably, however, we all experienced big life-changing lessons, in different ways. Those lessons, however, have a common thread, I was thinking, as I listened to the reveries...
We have all learned acceptance.
Acceptance of the place we find ourselves in brings tender memories of the way we once were...there were no harsh self-recriminations. There was gentle laughter instead.
And thus, at peace with ourselves, we whiled away a golden Sunday afternoon.