As January sets in, I face another birthday. At 44, I don’t consider myself “old” but I no longer see eye to eye with youth. Could this be the nether years?
My daughters are growing up; fast. College will set upon my oldest faster than I’m prepared while my youngest clings to the elementary school years and I cling with her. I’ve cuddled with Little Pie most every night of her life. Hard to imagine that shall pass.
Watching them grow makes me aware of my own mortality and I realize just how lightly we tread on the history of humankind.
Going lightly is an approach I try to apply to many life endeavors. It’s common sense.
My home is a collection of historical curios, books, and items pulled from the forest compiled in attempt to evoke a rounded curiosity in my daughters. I think it has. But sometimes, like when I have the blues, it feels a bit overwhelming and a visit to some Scandinavian furniture store to replace my curios and mix-matched vintage with light wood and simple lines seems to make sense. That’s likely the fault of the blues. Stepping back, I see that we are not consumption junkies, though the basement is always tornado alley after the holidays. My little family is moderately mindful about our material acquisitions.
But it still begs the ultimate question, why do we consume so much when life is so short? Especially when so many of us place a higher value on experiences rather than material goods. Think of all the possessions and waste each of us will leave behind. In many ways, the current American culture forces us into a corner of consumption instead a plain of awareness.
In a world where it can be so confusing as to what action is best for the planet and future generations, I can take refuge in the fact that shopping second hand is a sustainable practice. At least I know I'm doing one thing right.