“Years may seem so distant
Feels like a million miles
Troubles were nonexistent 1985.”
~ Roper, 1985
At the ripe old age of 28, I look back upon my childhood in the 1980’s with some measure of nostalgia. Family pictures show an era of bad hair, denim jackets, and Vision Streetwear skate shoes. As a kid I remember waking up every morning at 6 a.m. to watch my favorite cartoon shows. Thundercats, Voltron, and the Transformers ruled my morning television. He-Man and the Masters of the Universe, however, was a show that was not welcomed in my parent’s home. (Retrospect shows I didn’t miss the poorly made action figures from the show.) Little to my knowledge the Cold War was still raging. Star Wars, Space Station Freedom, and other Reagan-era programs were in full swing. My world was simplified by the four walls of my families’ home. Life was good and yet reality was quietly pounding at the door. Troubles were nonexistent…
I would venture to guess that most of us look back upon our childhood as a time when life was good and summer would never end. Days spent making mud pies, building ramps, and combating the evil menace known as the opposite sex (parents didn’t count!). For others, the era of childhood was a time which couldn’t end any sooner. Family complications, fights at school, and personal freedom just couldn’t keep some of us from wishing to be grown up.
Flash forward to the present and where do we find ourselves? The protection of our parents has finally begun to wane and the world has started its assault. Mixed moral messages, important life decisions, and blatant consumerism tell us that we have to keep up with those around us. Money is everything. How hollow does that statement ring to you?
As I grow older I find that relationships with actual human beings are everything in life. More and more, age has caused me to experience the seemingly inhuman concepts of tragedy and death. My awareness of people suffering around me grows with age. This suffering has always been going on, even in the 80’s, but youth makes one oblivious to such things. Relationships, history, knowing and learning from others, these are the things that matter. Life is certainly a vapor.
The American way of life is fast paced and easy to get caught up in. Sometimes we need to step back and reevaluate our lives. No one will remember you for the promotion you received at work, the money earned over your lifetime, nor the glories and accolades you received while doing so. In the end, people will remember how you lived your everyday life. Where you nice? Generous? Mean? God-fearing? Friend? Neighbor? What legacy are you trying to lead/ leave? Thoughts to ponder.