Maybe we’re just afraid of getting old beause of how we are treating our elders.

Isolating them as soon as they aren’t of monetary value. As soon as they aren’t producing more children. As soon as they move slower, and won’t labor for a machine. They know more, but our patience is short.

Growing, aging. We wouldn’t be blocked with anxiety about our natural process if we were surrounded by friends and community, moving with us through life at the same pace. If we had a role in our tribe throughout our lives. If we weren’t competing to look younger, to do more. Afraid of falling behind. Measured against everything manufactured and impossible.

Maybe we’re afraid of getting old because we didn’t do anything worthwhile yet. We didn’t yet do the things we wanted to do with this life. We were under constant pressure to spend it on things that don’t matter. Keep up, keep up. Then we realize, and instead of just jumping to action, we also feel the need to stay young; we have no clue what we’re doing; we have missed so much of a life that was our birthright.

We want to still have a chance. We want the world to confirm it, seeing our youth, and letting us live. We forgot that it can come from us.

We don’t want accountability for the way things are today. We’ll say we’re still kids, still figuring it out. But it’s ours now.

It’s ok, only the old are dying of covid. Just in a nursing home. Just stay in his room. Wave through the window. Through the iPad.

People pay strangers to look after parents so they can keep up with the rat race. Have enough money to spend on those necessary comforts, make it bearable to remain in our own thin, isolated, death-filled lives. I know not everyone is like that. But it’s too normal.

Embracing life means embracing all of us. The young and old. Real connection takes life to new levels of joy and peace. I wonder how different it would be if we were connected through our generations.

(Stranger Things season 4 spoiler) In Stranger Things, El has to let her Papa die, and never understands him, because he can never let her go into flourishing; he wants to keep control and use her within his realm of what’s possible. He can’t listen. When she knows a deeper calling that he can’t see. Maybe some of that generation we can’t bring with us. The ones who hold us back, and try and try to use us for themselves. But not everyone is like this. If they would let us go, we could help them, too.

I never really knew my grandparents. There aren’t really people I’ve known closely for many years, besides my own parents and siblings. I don’t know the wisdom of the people before me, besides from books I’ve chosen to read. I don’t feel connected in my community. I couldn’t afford college when I graduated; now I could take out loans and attempt it, but I don’t know if I will find an authentic community there anymore either. This way hasn’t felt satisfying. But without being connected, where do I start? Every year I’ve spent more time on the internet. And I wonder when I can reverse that, where may I connect in life.

I need to stop filling my mind with online, what brings me into confusion, what brings me down. Maybe if I spend more time in real life, even doing next to nothing, I will start to dream again. But it feels like my only connection to people today. I feel connected to nature, it holds me when I’m on my own. But I’m a human and I want more than this.

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