Or maybe it’s just me

You know what the fun part of being older is – you just don’t give a damn anymore. You finally reach the point where you are, as they say nowadays, your ‘authentic self’.

What’s that line from “Me and Bobby McGee” – “Freedom’s just another word for nuthin’ left to lose” – Certainly for most of us older folks that line holds a different meaning than in the song because you get to a certain age and dignity has gone out the door, and slammed it in your face.

Freedom to be whoever you think you are, or wanna be; to say what you truly feel (oh hell another song lyric) but not be unkind. See that’s where a lot of old folks get annoying. They think age gives them some sort of right to be unkind, opinionated in a very derogatory way. Some will, when called out on it, plead old age and senility when old age is their only status. The senility claim, when it isn’t true, is unkind to those who do suffer from it.

I’ve used the word ‘unkind’ several times now, and there are many synonyms, some extreme in their negativity that I can’t even relate to.

I am by nature and genetics a sarcastic person, and sarcasm can easily be experienced as unkindness (and maybe it is, no matter who, what or where). Just typing that makes me think maybe I should watch that aspect of my personality but you know some people…

And there you go – It is NOT easy being kind all the time, to everyone, in every situation. And unkindness is not always what you think it might be. I have very specific examples in mind which are all long stories in themselves and that’s not where I was going when I started writing this.

I read a lot of ‘stuff’ by 20, 30 and 40-somethings. These articles/essays are all about them (of course) and their Encounters with Life. What amuses me to no end is that every 20, 30, 40 something in the past century has had most of those same encounters. I read these essays and think to myself, sarcastically, “Oh you poor baby! Been there, done that, you’ll live.” And then they give advice – how to deal with these ‘encounters’ – basically re-inventing the wheel, because us old folks, well we figured all that out when we were 20, 30, 40-something. But I guess every generation has to come to the same conclusions on their own.

The basic pitfalls of being a human don’t seem to change. And the ways to avoid them and deal with their aftermath only change in the particulars.

Well this has meandered all over the place – it’s my ping ball brain – I get a thought and then it bounces to another thought which ricochets off another, and all of sudden…pinball_ball_ricochet_hg_clr

I do think if I ever corralled my thoughts, and dare I say, insights, into seperate, distinct essays I could be a rich and famous motivational writer. But – that’s never gonna happen because I have little interest in being a motivational writer. Nor do I really think my insights and advice are any more, or less, worthy than anyone elses. I’m happy to bounce along just being me.

And because, you know, I just don’t give a damn what you think of me. And that’s my advice to all y’all – try, to the best of your ability and practicality, (let’s not leave out practicality, ’cause if you’re young and still making a life and career for yourself, not giving a damn could be detrimental, I am nothing if not pragmatic) to not give a damn what people think of you. (Oh hell that is a long convoluted sentence which I should edit but I won’t).

Freedom comes at a price that you have to be willing to pay – or you can just wait till you get old.

7 thoughts on “Or maybe it’s just me

    1. There are perks to getting older, like my senior citizen discounts which I take advantage of and am thankful for, but they are not entitlements. I look at them as lovely gifts. Respect, at any age, is earned. It would seem that age would confer empathy and kindness, as in “been there, done that – I understand.”

      Like

  1. I’ve been thinking a lot about the idea that the basic pitfalls of being a human don’t change — and how this runs across eras and bigger political situations. And then there are those clients of mine who are adults, but still pretty young, and I want to tell that that this, too, shall pass and that some things are tied to figuring out who you are in the world. I want to write a how-to post or an article about how to stop relying on how-to articles, because they seem to be ubiquitous right now (Tools for Smarter Living; tips for . . . “adulting”). It’s so hard to picture even 40 when you are 25 and it’s hard to know that things will shift as time goes on. Just some thoughts your post brought up.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And I view all these with wry amusement, or is it bemusement…Each generation fights the same battles because the human “big picture” changes only in the details particular to the time. Tho I think as time has gone on those details have increased and become more complex – and yet some of the battles are easier to fight and win these days.

      Like

  2. Gosh I think about this all the time: “the basic pitfalls of being a human don’t change”- I’ve been thinking this a lot lately. I think writing to survive put it really well- I often think “this too shall pass” (often about things my own generation are freaking out about 😉 )

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And it will…and dealing with “it” in a positive way hasn’t changed – it’s just the details – ie: in my youth it was slam books, in today’s world it’s Twitter or whatever app teens use – the result is the same – bullying.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply to theorangutanlibrarian Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s