"Do now, do now, what you will wish to have done when your moment comes to die." [St. Angela Merici]

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Too Young to Succeed or Too Old to Be of Value?

By Micky Wolf

I read something the other day that made me laugh out loud, to an empty room no less.

Got me to thinking about the conundrums we create for ourselves. Like we don’t have enough important things to focus on without making life more complicated?

The article in question made note of a group of young people eager to share they were finding success in their chosen field. From their perspective, in spite of their youth.

I should have such a problem. No, wait a minute, I do—in the other extreme. I fret about succeeding and being of value—in spite of my age.

By the time you put the “too young” numbers at one end of the spectrum and the “too old” at the other end—let me assure you, for one reason or another, there’s not a whole lot of space left in between.

Which leads me to the simple green tomato metaphor—and the wisdom lesson contained therein.

You may or may not like tomatoes of any shape or color. Fine. That’s not the point.

The reality is—before a tomato is red, it’s not. But because someone, somewhere, at some time got the idea the green ones might be just as tasty in a different way, many tomato aficionados now have plenty of opportunities to experience this culinary delight.

Green or red, each stage of the maturation of this fruit offers something unique and special. Why would we want to choose one as the best, or of more value than the other?

There are occasions when owning our age is appropriate. A six-year old has no business trying to get a driver’s license (at least not in this country). On the other hand, does that negate the option for a sixty year old?

Methinks it’s way too easy to spend way too much time pigeonholing one another into an age defined box—young or old. To insist a number represents such importance is to risk stifling the ingenuity, creativity, and contributions to the human good that may be on the brink of discovery—by people like you. Or me.

So, here’s to this year’s tomato crop—any way you slice, dice, sauté, fry, dry, or sauce ‘em.

How important is age to me?

How do I feel about the number of my years?

Do I feel limited by my age? Why?

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