Our experiences are what connect us. Talk about the time you wrested a mango snake in Arkansas and if it isn’t beyond interesting, you lose your audience fast. Ask about the time you went to a movie and someone’s cell phone went off and everyone has their own story.
As I reflect more on what got me here, I think back to my childhood when I just assumed everyone’s lungs burned when they ran too much on certain days. That’s just how it was back in the 1960s, at least in my neighborhood. I assumed it was that way everywhere in the world. Only years later did I realize just how much pollution I was growing up in.
I also grew up believing assassinations were just what happened. I remember my monthly Cub Scout Pack meeting being canceled because President Kennedy had been killed. Years later, I just assumed they would cancel the Dodger game my dad & I had tickets to, because Bobby Kennedy was shot. That was the same year Martin Luther King, Jr. was gunned down.
As I came to age in the 1960s, there was so much going on. I suppose everyone feels that way about their generation, but let’s compare notes: Women’s lib, burning bras, hippies, assassinations, women working outside of home for the first time, war protests, the glorification of drugs, I mean, for God’s sake, The Beatles. Nothing like that has happened again and is very likely not to be repeated anytime in my lifetime.
I’m hoping that the country’s current economic dilemma is a life-lesson for every generation currently breathing on this earth. It took years to make happen and it’s not going away soon. I’ll fall back to the old cliche, ‘Whatever doesn’t kill us only makes us stronger.” Those are very wise words, but only true if we learn from those experiences we go through.
Things happen and, some believe, for a reason. That may or may not be true, but over time as the light goes on and you realize how much that incident played a part in your future decision-making, it all becomes quite clear: we truly are what we live through.