When We Were Kings
Why life is but a stage and many of them.
My father always said, time goes by quicker the older you get. As a child I never quite knew what he meant, but it made me appreciate being young that much more. To put a value on being a kid, the sky can literally be the limit. There is all this potential, particularly if we put in the work at school and with a good head on our shoulders. Think Warren Buffet or Bill Gates at 17, and how much value would you have ascribed to their future careers?
As we grow into early adulthood, our paths become clearer, along with other realities of life and having to do things we don’t want to do. No amount of crying or temper tantrums prevent us from having to take exams, get jobs, and pay our utilities bills. We may experience stress with our work, fall out with friends, make new ones, and find the one that we love as we try to make a life for ourselves. Foremost, it is a time when we are solely focused on us, we make choices only in our best interest and we take risks we otherwise cannot.
Once we have kids, these days of freedom are over. No longer can we make decisions in a vacuum, and it changes everything. We cannot walk out of a job because we don’t like our boss and we cannot sit and wait, hoping for something to come our way. It puts enormous pressure on us, accepting responsibilities for which we are not prepared, and things don’t get easier from there. The next shoe to drop is having to take care of our parents and looking after two sets of generations, it is little wonder that our first midlife crisis never seems to really end.
Then something miraculous happens. We turn grey and learn that the later years are the happiest of our lives. Time has unburdened us of our pain of those that have passed and our primary obligations to the ones that are in the nest no more. Moreover, we have learned what not to do. Unequivocally, when we are running out of time, we tend to waste less of it, and we simply avoid things we know will lead to no good. Hopefully, we can all look back without too much regret, but one thing is very clear: the rumble in the jungle was the best boxing bout of all times.