(Somebody asked me a question the other day along the lines of “Is the human race going to be okay or are we headed for our doom?” Before I lick the envelope and send my answer on the way I thought maybe I’d save it for future reference because well, you never know.)
We’ve all been here before (all=humans) but we’re awfully good at forgetting.
I remember an interview with an old woman working in a field somewhere when the USSR “fell”. She was asked how she felt about it and she said “I was here before all that and I’m still here.”
That’s the spirit!
Every year we have fires in the part of the country where I live. The fall before my oldest son was born I drove home to find my spouse on a ladder trying to save apples in a wind that had blown so much dust and smoke that the roads from whence I had come were closed behind my retreat. It’s a vivid memory.
That year they called it “The Ring of Fire.” This year there are firefighters my son’s age saying “this is a once in a century event.” Okay, what century? I remember fires in 1991, 1997, 2000, 2015 and…
Now we have social media mining our human hearts for ad revenue. The truth has become a fuzzy thing. That’ll shake out in the wash.
People may have to go through some hard things before they smarten up but that is how we have gotten ourselves this far.
My grandparents were kids during the last pandemic. They lost friends to diseases and there was a war. After that things got even harder so they were too busy living to wring their hands and cry about one awful thing that had happened. It happened. They leaned into the stuff that had to be done. They had kids who remembered that their parents had a dark sense of humor but also never quit doing what needed to be done. There are some who won’t do the necessary things but most of us do. It’s not wonderful exciting grandiose memorable kinds of stuff. It’s just stuff.
Optimism isn’t insanity or childish wishful thinking. It’s a survival skill. Most of us have it even if we don’t know it. Yes, we will be okay. Sometimes we won’t be great. Some parts of what is going to happen, now and in the future, are totally going to suck but will end up okay.
Sure. Okay. We’re going to be just exactly that.