I hope that those that read this little post of mine today will take it to heart. I especially would love to know that those under thirty-somethings will be paying attention. Today I want to share a very deep-felt life lesson. Age and the emotional damage it creates.
I am not talking about the physical changes, that’s just a nasty side effect of aging. I am here to tell you that I have earned every single one of those lines on my face (mostly from laughing at myself), and I am very proud of them. No, what I am talking about is the anger that comes with it.
I never EVER dreamt of running for a political office. Being raised in the 1960’s, I still remember what world leaders did or did not do about Vietnam (among other wars – and YES, it was a war, not a police state! What BS is that?), and it’s issues (before & after).
I remember throwing my bra in a fire for women’s rights in the 1970’s. (Yes, I am giggling at this one because I can’t do without the stupid thing now or I would have black-and-blue knees – eeek.)
I remember growing up on the farm with fields to work, animals to take care of, and all the functions required; bending, lifting (some heavy lifting), scrapes, cuts, falling and getting back up and doing it all over again.
My body has come to the point where it is telling me ENOUGH! I cannot do the physical things I used to do, which is heartbreaking. I am much now smarter than I ever was, yet I have never felt so hopeless – and scared. No one will hire me because I am broken – not stupid – just too much of a health risk.
I am not afraid of spiders and snakes (Ooo, that just reminded me of a great song by Jim Stafford, click here to listen – it’s fun.). I’m not afraid of losing loved ones, that is part of the circle of life. I am, however; becoming very afraid of the powers that be making a stupid decision that affects my life profoundly. The part that really gets my goat is that not one among them has EVER had to know personally what their decisions do to screw up my life!
I would love to know if any of our politicians have had to do the following:
• Pick up and throw a 50-80 pound hay bale to keep the animals fed.
• Saved a life. I’m talking about serious stuff – pulling from a car accident, type of saving.
• Felt the emotional loss of a beloved animal as a child.
• Experienced being in a house fire.
• Having lived through that fire only to have your 4-year old grandson not.
• Watching as 50+ years of creations, letters, diaries, books, albums, collections, your mother’s hand paintings, recipes your father created, and other priceless memories go up in flames.
• Follow that up with the next 12 months filled with major surgeries – oh, guess what? You get to lose ½ your finger, and in the process, we found you have no major joints left. Everything is bone-on-bone and will all need to be replaced.
• Work for the stupid government for 11+ years only to find out doing so, screwed you out of your benefits.
• Then have “your” government decide that they want to change the following:
- Even though you have already gone through the whole mind-numbing process, and been approved for Medicare/Medicaid; we now want to make you go back to work (as if anyone will hire me like this), just because you “LOOK” healthy enough to do so.
- We also want to pull all your guns, because someone with mental health issues (oh, don’t forget – we will not go for that excuse anymore), decides to use one to kill. GOD FORBID WE ACTUALLY TRY TO FIX THE MENTAL ISSUES THAT CAUSED IT IN THE FIRST PLACE.
- We are going to take away your beautiful natural landmarks because our Good-ole-boys in corporate companies want the land to make more money off it.
- We also want to give those same buddies of ours the right to pump old nasty oil waste water out in the middle of nowhere near you. (Oh, and we do not care if your drinking water aquifer is right on that spot. You can pay to have water shipped in all clean and pretty.)
I remember holding huge family corn roasts every fall. After several years it became family and friends and just kept growing bigger. As far back as I can remember, we had a distant cousin with MS. She was brilliant but could not move even to talk. She had learned to smile when she was truly happy, and I remember several of us working our hearts out to entertain her because we loved her. Her parents carried her everywhere. Our whole family supported them in their efforts (and our family was huge.). The parents got older, and the daughter got bigger. Eventually, she was placed in an institution and passed away. But the family did not simply give up on her because it was hard.
When did it become so easy to write things off simply because they do not affect you?
When did choosing the first answer become the right answer, even if proved wrong?
When did the new generations decide that they did not have to care about things that were not all about them?
I was 40, 30, 20, yes and even 10 years old once upon a time. I grew up learning the following truths:
• Work hard, and you will be rewarded.
• There is no such thing as a free lunch, but you can help someone less fortunate than you.
• Treat others as you want them to treat you.
These were not just bits from a book, but real things my family believed in. Real things they impressed upon us since birth. Real things that we still try to follow and share.
I have become obsessed with end-of-the-world type movies. I don’t think an asteroid or alien is going to be our demise. I think we have already done more damage to us than any foreign object ever could.
When we stop trying to make things better…
When we stop showing and sharing compassion…
When we stop being as we the people and stand up against the wrong – even if it is the harder way…
THEN, we will lose our world, and we will have deserved it.
You can also check me out on: www.helbergfarmstories.com for fun stories from our farm.