Give up every preconceived notion. Toss away the old and hang on for a great ride into the new. Why? All for the children.
When I was a child, I was told that the world would be around for thousands of years. I was told that animals did not think like we do. Their behavior was all instinct. I was told that you could not make a living in the arts. I was told that we had endless natural resources. Then I grew up. Then I got older. Then I got smarter.
I think perhaps this awakening began when I had grandchildren. My children are very dear to me, but I was so busy raising them and learning to be a parent that I failed to have time for reflection, let alone change. Yep, I knew as a child that animals did indeed have feelings and thoughts. Proof was in the loving. I figured that maybe Dad would figure that one out on his own one day. He never did. I know my grandkids understand.
Yes, making a living in the arts is not easy, but the rewards of each accomplishment are stunning. Finding an inner voice and expressing it in an art form certainly answers the call that was born in many of us. To deny those gifts is truly taking a gift away from God.
I learned not to think as others do or did, but to find out what was true for me, what my inner nature knew to be true. In this I found it easy to love everyone regardless of faith, beliefs and most of all race. I learned that my life is richer by understanding others and where they come from. I have no right to judge and love that I can celebrate that with kindness.
With open eyes and ears, the discovery of environmental decline hit me right between the eyes. I could choose to be a critic and a hindrance, or I could change the way I lived and be a champion for this old world.
Why? Why be concerned about any of this? Why take action? Who wants to change when it is easier to stay the same? Why should we be open to change? Well, my big answer would be: Because of the children! They deserve our best. They deserve to see us active and involved. They need to know we can be wrong. We can be caring. We can be leaders. We can change.
As a girl I observed and wondered. Somewhere within that child, I sought answers to questions I’d yet to ask. So now as that adult, I watch world news for this, too, is my world family. I recycle and conserve energy as best I can. The earth is calling to us. The people on the earth are calling, too. I share art and nature with my grandchildren and open conversations where I focus on what they have to say. Yep, I even talk to the dog. Life changes. We have our own questions to answer. In doing it for us, we do it for the children.
Pamela Loxley Drake is a former resident of Darke County and is the author of Neff Road and A Grandparent’s Voice blog. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.