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Thoughts on getting older and the battle still ahead
Guest columnist

Diane Mayfield

Local writer

I saw a good friend at the supermarket. We went to high school together, so we stopped to talk for a moment. He remarked “where are the old people?,” and then laughed and said “we are the old people.”

When you become “old”, it is an entirely different world and your viewpoint changes drastically.

Your health starts to decline. You can’t see well any more, and arthritis sets in various places. Memory starts taking a hit, and all kind of health problems appear, You become aware of others with similar problems, seeing things differently, and it begins to change one as a person.

Technology becomes a challenge and you depend on younger people to help maneuver through that web. You lose awareness; have you ever looked for your cell phone while you were talking on it? Do you feel out of step with the world, and in a place your don’t recognize.

We become aware of the way younger people are living their lives, and the mistakes they are making. But telling them what you know is like talking to sheetrock for all the good it does. All you can do is watch, just like our parents and older loved ones did when we were young. You can see it now, just like they could.

You can look around you and see how drastically things are changing, you want to tell the country it is going in the wrong direction, and you fear for what is happening. The future of our country is in peril, largely from internal problems.

So where do we go from here? We the older generation need to stand up. We are going to have to fight if we make it to tomorrow as free as we are today. President Ronald Reagan said in his inaugural address that “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction.” We find ourselves at precisely that point at present.

So think about what you can do personally to help.

Work with young people; they need guidance. Set a good example for them.

Our country has always been a country of faith.

Find a church or whatever you prefer, and start attending. Do things for others to show your love and concern. You won’t have to look far to locate someone that needs encouragement.

And visit; don’t text or call, but do a face to face visit.

Be sure to vote, or get registered if need be. Businesses need help; take a part time job. These are just a few suggestions. Start with one or two of them or come up with your own, We may be “old”, but we have an ongoing battle to join. We are following in the steps of those Americans that fought WWII.

Many lost their lives, and many were injured, but they kept us free. And this is the fight of our lives, for our freedom. There has never been a more crucial time in our history.

Diane Mayfield is a Bryan County native and a longtime freelance writer.

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