Friday, April 29, 2016

Y is for Youth

Y is for Youth; and where did it go? “Youth is wasted on the young.” This quote is attributed to George Bernard Shaw and Oscar Wilde. (Or so says the internet) No matter who said it; it is true. The trouble is that you have to be no longer young to truly appreciate youth.
My fascination with books started early.
There are those who will say that age is just a number or youth is a state of mind. To a certain extent, these statements are also true. But let’s face it, we all have to come to terms with aging and mortality at some point. There are things I did in days past that I just can’t do anymore.
I used to love to go camping. I enjoyed it so much that I often camped alone. During my high school and college years, I would take off with little more than a thin sleeping pad, a sleeping bag, and a tarp. 
My Rottweiler, Lugar accompanied me on these lone excursions. I didn’t need a tent or any fancy camping gear. A hatchet and bic lighter made sure I would have a fire. The tarp kept the dew or rain off me and I could still sleep under the stars. If I tried to sleep on the ground today, my body would protest. The aches and pains would be severe. I would be lucky to be able to get up.
Of course, many of these aches and pains come from the way I spent my youth. I worked very hard. I played very hard as well. The bad knees come from years of standing on my feet at work, years of playing softball, and over doing it in the weight room at the gym. I’m sure night after night spent dancing in high heels did them no favors either, but it was fun.

 The bad back is attributed to lifting things I should have left to others. Hiking with a heavy pack may have done a little damage there as well. The tendonitis and arthritis in my shoulders is due to repetitive motion at work and lifting things I shouldn’t have. . Also some of that damage might be from paddling a canoe, chopping wood, or over-doing it at the gym. I earned my scars and often it was worth it.
Mt. Hood

The Bard wrote. “Age, I do abhor thee. Youth, I do adore thee.” Perhaps because we gain wisdom with age, we wish to turn back the clock and spend our youth doing more, accomplishing more. Or maybe we merely want to do it all again. Youth truly is fleeting. When youth has fled, do not look back and say, “I wish I had…” but rather, “I’m glad I did…” Y is for Youth. #atozchallenge

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