One thing certain about life is that all things change and that the cycle of life, death and life continues. This is something we don’t usually want to think about, however existential angst is often just below the surface of our awareness, tapping softly.
But before you shake your head and change the channel, this post is not about death but the other more everyday ‘life, death, life’ issues. Each year as we get older things that were part of our life change so completely that they have essentially died. Our body’s age and change so dramatically that the old body seems to ‘die’ and most people will grieve the loss. When our children age we grieve the loss of each stage – the baby, toddler, child, teenager – it continues unabated. School finishes, jobs change, friends and lovers change, everything changes and with each change there is a type of grieving. But more importantly there is always a new beginning or life born out of the change.
Life proceeds so quickly that sometimes I don’t think I have quite caught up with some of the grieving, particularly regarding lost friends. I used to hang out with an awesome group of people, as most people do when teenagers and twenty somethings. You never think it will end but it does, and it has to. Can you imagine still hanging out in a big group and raging constantly when you are married and have children. It does end and it is sad and we need to grieve and accept and move on.
Often the lifestyles we choose as young people cannot be sustained for a lot of different reasons. Mine was an unsustainable lifestyle, that’s for sure.
When I was younger my favourite sound was the voice of the man who commentates the horse racing. I studied the form guide religiously and always put the money down ‘on the nose’ – none of this woosy place betting for me.
I remember playing cards with friends for ridiculous lengths of time – one night we played 12 hours straight. Another night I won my friends Holden Monaro GTS in a card game called Guts. He didn’t have enough money so he put his keys to the car in the ‘guts’. Big mistake! That car was the love of his life so I let him off the hook and he just had to cough up regular installments of cash instead – which he did, thanks Bruce.
My gambling was rarely a problem to me, possibly because I was very good at statistics and had a good poker face – put it this way, my nicknames included Killer and Shark. It probably would have turned into a problem if I had continued. I gave up simply because my husband Andrew (aka Shirl) hates gambling, plus it no longer fit into my new lifestyle which revolved a great deal around being a mother.
I should point out that I was never into slot machines (which are much more addictive) and I can’t stand looking at the mindless faces of people putting hard earned cash into gaming machines.
We did a hell of a lot of other things which aren’t compatible with the getting of age and wisdom, but I don’t want to go on and on and on.
My point is that many changes are for the best so maybe it’s good just to embrace the change.