Youth —the state of being young. Just when you think you’ve got it down pat, you aren’t.

There’s something wonderful about youth, in all it’s terribleness. You know everything. You’re better than your parents were—kinder, more accepting, more understanding, freer and way more worthy. You jump right in, oft-times without foresight. You don’t just get sad or lose at love, you get heartbroken—heart smashed to bits. You don’t just feel, you Feel. The love is so real and palpable you can see it’s movement, it’s vibe across the skyline the way sunshine shimmies across water.

And when you aren’t…young…anymore. You feel as well. You feel, the stiffness and the creaks in your muscles and bones. Your decisions are more measured. You contemplate, what it would really mean to let someone else into your life. There’s things and places for things and you say things like, “A place for everything and everything in its place”. And you don’t gag and you’re not jesting. You’re pleased. You remember your grandmother saying this and you don’t roll your eyes. And somewhere along the line you realize it stopped being all about you. And perhaps it was around the time you started having kids—more or less. Which gives you time to prepare…

…for when you need to make decisions for your parents who used to be young and now they are very, very old. Just when you stop deciding what your children will wear tomorrow and what  sweet but not too sweet cereal, you’ll put in the house, you’ll find yourself deciding on which Depends fit your mother better, bargaining tv for showers and trying to explain what happens if you don’t eat. And asking questions, like what happens if you don’t eat? And the jump from understanding that a feeding tube will save her life, and she says things exactly like, “do anything it takes to keep me alive” to actually agreeing to get the feeding tube seems to be an insurmountable chasm yet to be comprehended and crossed.

6 thoughts on “Old

  1. We never ended up being able to get my Mum a feeding tube, it turned out to be for the best in the end. I remember feeling that all those ‘Feels’ I had in my youth were incomparable to the feeling of real loss… I used to roll my eyes every time mum said Robert Redford was hot… I realised I was getting old (and proud of it) when I could see his hotness 😀 – thought provoking post and a pleasure to read again Batsheva

  2. Age is such a strange thing. The days can move so slowly, yet the years keep piling up. Inside you feel basically the same, though a little more honed by the prevailing winds. My sketch comedy writing group are all much younger than I am, and some days I feel no difference, and some days I feel very far from them all.

    A Bit to Read

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