December 18, 2018, Prescott-
So now, my full days of school, for 2018, are in the rear view mirror. Three abbreviated school days remain, before we all take a break for the period which, for many, is a time of celebration and revelry. For others, it will be a time of remembrance of a Great Being, Whose sacrifice and teachings are fully intended to bring peace to those who understand them. For still others, it will be a time of lying low and making do with very little. Then, the Gregorian clock will reset itself, and we will have 2019 AD/CE. (I am old school, and prefer the former, in figuring time since the Birth of the Christ. Further disclosure: We Baha’is determine our place in time, dating from the Declaration of al-Bab, in May, 1844 and thus will refer to next year as 176 Baha’i Era, or B.E. For general social purposes, though, I will continue to date my posts by the Gregorian system.)
During this period of revelry, rest, reflection and resilience, I wish these things, to the following:
Seniors (75 and onward): May your curiosity continue and may it bring you the recognition and relevance that ought to come with accrued wisdom . The elder among you raised our generation and can take large credit for the best that we have been able to offer the world, through your parenting. The younger among you are our older cousins, siblings and mentors. It would have been harder growing up without your shared experiences and occasional babysitting. You remain friends, and vital presences in my life-Mom, Uncle Jim and Aunt Jackie, Aunt Janet, Aunt Carol, both Aunts Helen, Aunt Gail, Uncle Jerry, and my online friends and older cousins, (you know well to whom I am referring).
My Contemporaries (55-74): My siblings, many cousins, classmates, immediate elders and juniors, and a good many of my friends-We have gone through many of the same experiences, hard times, great celebrations, triumphs and tragedies, victories and losses. We have seen Woodstock and the Men on the Moon; the gradual “shrinking” of Planet Earth, and changes that we never anticipated. Considering that my first phone call, to my late Aunt Hazel, was aborted by a shrill voice telling me to get off the phone, as it was a party line “used by grown-ups, for important matters”. I did as I was told, and remember my mother’s eyes rolling, as she quipped, “important matters, like everyone else’s business!” Now, the picture phones and calls between vehicles, of which I once dreamed, are de rigeur. May our days not be hamstrung by health-related woes, to the extent that we can use natural remedies, exercise and a well-varied diet, to keep us going. May we continue to love those older and younger than we; and because we first know to love ourselves.
Millennials and Generation X (20-54): You have brought many of the ideas of which I once dreamed, as a child and teen, into being. Many of you were my students and counselees. I helped a fair number, confused some and let others down, but loved all of you. Among you are my nieces and nephews, and my own beloved son and daughter-in-law. You grew up in my hometown of Saugus; or in the woods of central Maine; or in the elite families who sent you to a boarding school in the midst of the Sonoran Desert; or on the Navajo and Hopi nations, reared by loving, but often struggling extended families, who gave me more than I could ever repay; or in the western Sonoran Desert, a string of communities that gave newcomers a wary, if cordial, welcome-even when several were newcomers, themselves; or you grew up, as our son did, moving from town to town and making the best of life, even when it felt lonely. I wish you a future far better than the recent past has shown you, and know that you have it within, to make wondrous things happen.
Generation Z (Newborns to 19)- I am thrilled to see the older among you come of age, shed the misgivings of your elders and take on the challenges that the Universe has sent your way, either because of the nature of life or because of what the rest of us have managed to create. Every generation hands down both blessings and banes to its progeny, so do forgive us and know that you are also very much loved. You have come into my life, as my working years are winding down and you have given me the confidence, the sense that my volunteer, travel and, quite possibly, grandparent years will be as bounteous and fulfilling as all that has gone before. May we all greet and nurture the generations that come after you, as well.
To all, I treasure my time among you and may it long yet continue. A Merry Christmas, Bountiful Kwanzaa, Joyful Solstice and Healthy, Prosperous and Happy 2019, to each and every one.