Updated: Nov 12, 2018
21 years ago, we were in Greece, holidaying with our new son for the first time. Great memories, fabulous times. Jack did, however, look a bit grumpy when put on a Grecian pedestal! Doing some well overdue sorting of old photos, I came across so many that the hours seemed to ebb away. It's amazing how old photos can invoke so many feelings - and wile away so much time!
Reading today about how a 9 year-old girl in Australia has refused to stand for the National Anthem because she cannot reconcile the words with her view of modern Australia filled my heart with pride for the young generation, then it was poisoned by scorn watching the ageing, jaded politician's response! Pauline Hanson - please retire! It made me think, yet again - I think on this subject a great deal - how we fail consistently in the one simple task of bringing up our children to be strong, independent, caring human beings. We are so lost in our own selfish all-consuming whirlwinds, that we cannot take that vital step back to view the world through innocent eyes, eyes that belong to the young.
Change is as inevitable as the passage of time, yet as we get older, we fight it with every breath. We have adopted our routines, our beliefs, our habits and our skills. We have invested massive amounts of time & energy getting to where we have got to. So how can it now all be wrong & changing? Where does that leave us? You know the phrases: "It was good enough for us then..."; "If it ain't broke, don't fix it"; and the absolute worst, "In my day...". If you are lucky enough to have kids, take a look at their views, their beliefs. Have they been fashioned brutally in your own image, or have you raised them to question everything? Of course, there are many complaints about how kids nowadays "have no respect" and "in our day we wouldn't have dared" but of course we did, it was just from a different starting point.
We abhor change, but we are the architects of our own doom, because we were young once & the young cannot be held back. My father disappointed his father on so many levels, yet went on to have a successful career & be recognised for it. However, he worked in the tobacco industry & we had many a long discussion about the morality of that. Conversations that will happen in the coming decades about so many sterling careers in industries that will be proven to harm creatures, people & the environment. We know what a lot of them are now, but it will take a new generation coming through to put them properly in their place.
If you are fortunate to have new children, put them on a pedestal & teach them that they are loved, cherished, worthy & that they must question everything they are ever taught, but with intelligence & compassion. That way, rebellion is contained & proper discussions can be held. Just beware though, your own conduct will be called into question then, so please either have the chutzpah to admit what you should have done better, or change it now before it's too late. Pride, age and the resistance to change are the barriers we must allow the young to pull down, gently. Don't become a Pauline Hanson!