To be frank all good things must come to an end.
Summer, a day at the beach, a holiday, one’s employment at a company, good economic times, low interest rates, even lifelong friendships or simply a nice bottle of wine.
The Queensland State of Origin team will eventually surrender the shield to NSW – hopefully not until they’ve won 10 straight – but it will happen. A winning streak at the races or a flurry on the pokies will inevitably end. In my case it’s a miracle if it starts in the first place! The closest I get to a winning streak is a tray of steak at the bowls club! All I need is an ‘r’!
Anyway, it matters not; it will all eventually come to an end. And in knowing this shouldn’t we be hardwired to wringing every last drop out of the good times and the good things they bring? If we know there’s an end, why do we some of us look to the end and start to wind down and accept it… pre-emptively or even prematurely. Should we not be careering to into it like a pole on the sidewalk because we’re enjoying every last drop (which could cause facial injuries with the said bottle of wine)… not staring at our feet in dismay?
On the contrary, I think many of us are hardwired to look to the end and slowly taper our enjoyment down to time it with its inevitable conclusion (again with said bottle of wine you could just have another lined up, cork out, breathing and ready to pour… just saying). How many of you start to wind down a holiday before you’ve even boarded the plane? You start to think of all the things you have to do and despair. I think this it’s a natural defensive mechanism. Most of us have survived the school of hard knocks and this may be one of its unfortunate side effects.
But why, oh why are we so hell bent on squeezing the fun, the laughter, the stupid annoying noises, the fart jokes, the magical innocence and the endless energy out of our grandkids?
I was reading a book to my granddaughter the other day entitled ‘Anna’s Ghost’ by Nigel Gray. It’s about a little girl, Anna, who befriends a ghost living in her house.
“Oh no” said Anna. “What will I do when they tell me off?” (Her parents that is, for being a noisy eater or spilling food down her dress or for laughing too loudly).
‘They can’t help being like they are,” said Ghost, “They’re old. “You have to remember that they were grumbled at for silly things when they were little – so now they grumble at you.”
This passage really got me wondering. Why do we have to be happy-happy-joy-joy killers? Do we really want or need them to be more like us? Why would we ever want to suppress their natural carefree, silly, imaginative, inquisitive, observational, bipartisan and inclusive state? Kids are the way they are because they are living for the moment, free of the shackles we’ve imposed on ourselves. The past is not relevant and tomorrow brings more adventures. Shouldn’t we be more like them?
They will become corporate drones, slaves to unsustainable mortgages and taxes all too soon enough, so why not just let them be kids for as long as physically possible.
I cast my mind back… reflected on how my parents were with me, how I was with my own kids and how my kids are now with my grandkids. There’s always an element of grumbling at them for silly things. When you really ask yourself, “does it really matter if they continue doing what they’re doing?” “Is it not making them happy?” “Do I not want them to be happy?”
Then why do we want it to stop?
Wouldn’t we all be better off if we were more child like in some ways?
So with that thought, I’ve opened another bottle of red… quite a nice drop actually… and I’m going to enjoy every last sip as I contemplate new beginnings, not the things that come to an end…
Do you think we dwell on the bad instead of embracing the good? Do we focus too much on what has been done instead of what could be done? Share your thoughts with Tobe Frank today…