Why does it seem that everyone is getting younger and younger? Or is it just that as I go through my own life journey, I realize how very young I was when I was "that" age??
The area I live in tends to attract lots of young people from all over the world. Late teens, early to mid 20 somethings. Free. Traveling. Having fun. No worries (or from my perspective 20 years later, knowing that there were rarely any real worries in the long run!) Not stressing about tomorrow, living for today. Not having a care. And now that you mention it, not really being clear about what it is that they should be caring about in the first place.
Ahhhh, the bliss of youth.
A girlfriend and I recently had a chuckle. I'm 41 and she's turning 42 soon. Living in this youth attracting area, we realized that it is probably just about the only place on earth that we've been referred to as an "older woman" in a sense that actually makes us feel ((gulp)) old. Not middle age...older. What a hoot!
Recently, I caught myself watching a table of three traveling young ladies at a bar. I'd guestimate they were between the ages of 18-20, from somewhere in South America. Young. Flawless. Beautiful. Free. Laughing. And (hopefully) with their whole lives ahead of them. They can choose anything at this point. I started to flashback and daydream about myself at the age. The choices I made. The roads those decisions led me down. And it's funny because at that age, you have no idea what the outcome will be, or how much true potential you have. Everything and anything is at your grasp if you only choose it. But life is ironic that way because you only come to those realizations by making the choices, good or bad, and traveling the roads they take you down. Only through hindsight can you see things crystal clear. (Guess that's where the saying "Hindsight is 20/20" must've home from, huh?)
But you know, "youth" is a funny thing. It's determined from what point in time you take a look. I may look at these travelers I encounter and think they are soooo young and with the vast world in front of them. But 20 years ago, I was that young woman, yet to someone 20 years older than me, I still am.
This occurred to me when two women I'd estimate to be in their early 70's strolled through the shop and we starting chatting about how I came to be living in this tropical paradise. They asked all the standard questions "do you like it here?", "did you come alone?" "will you ever go back to the U.S.?" The one woman looks at the other and says "Ahhhh, can you imagine having so much time and opportunity left?"
And she's right.
What a strange world it is that puts so many head-trips on the impossible task of remaining young forever and then discourages you as you get older, as if your time has already run out while you're still in the processes of living your life.
I think it too easy to lose sight of the fact that no matter where you are in this youth-game, you still have what's ahead of you - ahead.