Sunday, January 1, 2012

Remembering life as we start 2012--To the high school graduationg class of 65

Time magazine published an article entitled "Don't Worry, There's Life After High School."

The article got me thinking as we approachthe New Year that life 47 years after graduating from Nanaimo Senior High School is different than when we were seniors in high school, but its still life in the Boomers. We didn't know it at the time, but we were at the forefront of the Boomer generation, and we would change the world as we travelled through life. We continue to impact the world.

William Shakespeare in his play “As You Like It” has one of his characters Jaques, in Act II Scene vii compare the world to a stage and life to a play. In that speech Shakespeare catalogued the seven stages of a man's life: infant, schoolboy, lover, soldier, justice, pantaloon second childhood, "sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything" While the Bible in Psalms 90, vs. 10 defines our life span as, "The days of years are threescore years and 10 and if by reason of strength they be four score years yet it is soon cut off, and we fly away."

Forty Seven years after high school, we may be in our bonus years of life and we belief we have to hasten to complete unfinished dreams and plans. Thinking back to 1965, we have memories of the many changes that have occurred during the past 47 years. Yesterday we saw ourselves as young, strong, smart, and good-looking seniors in high school. Yesterday is history and we must live with who we are today. Yesterday I had a head full of dark wavy brown, (too wavy for me:-) hair but now while my hair is still too  wavy, it is no longer dark brown, and I no longer have a head full but what I have is silver white.

What a trip life is; full of challenges and constant changes. Boomers are a blessed generation, more good opportunities came to us than bad ones, most of us acquired a mate, a home, children, vehicles, a good job, friends, etc. Challenges and changes also caused us fear. Fear of fear, fear of getting old, going broke, having a stroke, getting fat, going bald, losing our job, fear of dying, etc. and the never-ending question of "why are we here"?

Songs and Music helped me to deal with my fears. Music and song helped calm my fears, gave me hope and helped me sleep throughout the night. I remember that I learned to listen late at night to my transitor radio. I learned the words and music coming over the radio and slowly learned to appreciate the words and stories that the songs told me. Over time I learned what those sweet, sweet, sounds and words and meaning meant and how they helped shape my world Words of one of my favorite songs are: "Summertime and the living is easy, fish are a jumping and the cotton is high, your daddy's rich and your maw's good looking, SO HUSH little baby don't you cry. One of these mornings you're going to rise up singing and you'll take your flight to the sky, but until that morning nothing can harm you with Daddy and Momma by your side."

These songs contained sweet melodies and offered calm assurance to me so that I knew that I and the world were going to be all right. Knowing that I could live one day at a time and that today's problems can be dealt with! Wiht music I believed that we could face our problems one day at a timeand I also believe that Yes I could!

I have no musical training, can't read music notes, can't play a musical instrument and cannot sing! But listening to music I feel emotions rising from within, the sound of hope, freedom and peace moving free through the air. When fear and doubts come upon us this emotion deep within us can burst forth in a song that will help us overcome our doubts and fears.

Today's music may be foreign to our understanding, however, we have learned our songs from the world's best teachers, the voice of experience that we have acquired through the trials in our lives and the blows and hardships we have overcome. It may be more difficult to learn "new tricks" but we can and we can also share with others what we have learned from experience. What is more important, what is more valuable than a proven old friend?

Most of us can recall when we were young children and being held when someone was singing to us. A time of comfort and security when our imaginations were set free and we could ride on a rocking horse, we could see a spider going up the waterspout, we could see the twinkling little stars, and sometimes we would catch a glimpse of an angel fluttering over us. Magic moments, smelling a sweet fragrance, feeling a power of sweet love all around us and then the singing would stop, the magic moments would disappear, but we would be left with memories that would last a lifetime.

Forty seven years after highschool and I am still remembering the magic moments and angels in my live. I remember and pay respect to our many departed teachers and classmates and departed friends. I imagine many of the present members of the class of 1965 have lost their parents, friends, husbands or wifes, some have lost children and other family members and favorite family pets. In spite of these loses the precious memories still linger and we are able to grasp and recall some of yesterday’s blessings.

Members of the Class of 1965 are the leading edge of what is described as "The World's Greatest Generation" and 47 years after high school, life is still good.

Most members of the Class of 1965, I think would agree that the spring and summer of our lives have past, autumn is almost gone, and winter and snow is soon coming.

The writers of Psalms and Summertime uses "flight" and the poet Frost uses "walk" to describe our Earthly endings. Hopefully we like one of Frost's poems have miles and miles to go before we sleep.

My wish for all people and especially for the members of the Class of Nanaimo Senior High School and all others who graduated in 1965 is that we all continue to have our own music, and that it is always, "Summertime and the living is easy."

There is life 47  years after high school, and my hope is that for all of us in the class of 65 life continues to be good!

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