Wednesday, August 30, 2017

All Generations

Recently, I met a friend who has children at the local park. Thunder rolled as we pulled up. We had nowhere to go. The library was closed. There was nowhere for two women and their three children to gather away from the thunder.

Why is this? Why are there hardly places for families? Why are there so many places where families are not welcome? Why is age mixing in gathering places so inadequately met? Why are our activities often engaging only one age group at a time?

***

Some Wednesdays, Beren and I go to Bridge Cafe in Frenchtown. [It is our new Boro Bean, a cafe in Hopewell that was just a couple minutes form our old house.] A group of woman elders who all do fiber arts gather. 
 
I sip my chai, he sips his hot chocolate, and we watch the needles move. Felting, cross stitch, knitting, crocheting. The women talk family, travel, politics, and crafts. Every Wednesday they meet.

I encourage Beren to move closer. Occasionally, we talk with the women. One gives Beren a felted cardinal.

***

I want to be with all generations - 
Tiny ones, I learn from the way to see the world, new and unfettered and expectant of love.
 
Growing ones, I learn from how you grow and meet challenges. You are learning to walk - I am in awe of you.
 
Children, I learn your exuberance. You meet the world with joy and determination.
 
Youth, I watch as you navigate the world with certainty and uncertainty. 
 
Peers, I walk with you.
 
Elders, I come to you for solace and inspiration and assistance.

All, your good years are now. I need you all.
 
I have so much to learn from you. It is my responsibility to mentor and be mentored, to guide and be guided, to protect your joy and be protected, and to challenge and be challenged. It is my responsibility to now when to move closer and when to step back.

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