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Monday, June 10, 2013

Overheard Conversations



I don't like to eavesdrop on conversations, but sometimes it's unavoidable. So I'm looking at some camping gear in a store the other day, minding my own business. An older gentleman, dressed like a businessman, was talking to one of the clerks. His voice was loud enough that half the store could hear what he was saying. Maybe he thought we all should benefit from his opinion -or maybe he was just hard of hearing and assumed everyone else was too.

He was ranting about this young lady he saw walking down the street, three little kids in tow. According to the businessman, a young lady had no business having kids in this economy. She should have been concentrating on her education and career. According to this man, that young lady's life was pretty much over.

I thought back to how 30 years ago someone probably said the same thing about my lovely wife. We got married at 20 and in four years had 3 children. Back then, my lovely wife still looked like she was 16. Someone seeing her with the children could have made some very unkind judgments.

My wife did interrupt her education for a year to have our first child. She even took a few years off from work when the children were babies. Later, she went back to work, in the field she trained in, and had a 30 year career.

From a biological standpoint, our only real measure of success is passing on our genes. Having children young makes sense. The biological clock is no joke and really can't be cheated.

From an economic, social, and intellectual standpoint, having children while financially secure and mentally mature makes sense. Obviously these things are at odds with each other. At best, we find a compromise and a balance that we somehow make work.

Now I really have no idea what that young woman's situation was. However, she had one huge advantage that the business man and I lack. She is young. Just because she has children doesn't mean her life is over. It could turn out awesome. It might be harder to make her way in life with little children, but some people are inspired to succeed because they have children.

-Sixbears

12 comments:

  1. So many folks who suggest how others should live have unhappy lives themselves. Perhaps he was jealous of the young woman.

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    Replies
    1. Perhaps. He did sound like a profoundly unhappy man.

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  2. Who can know what he was thinking or speaking out of. Regardless children are a treasure if you realize that you are rich and life is full of possibility both now and future

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  3. Like you, I married at 20 and had two wonderful boys by the time I was 23. Would have loved to have more. My life really began when I had children. Wish it hadn't been necessary for me to go back to work, but we managed just fine.

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    Replies
    1. We find a way to get by. Helps to have family and friends.

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  4. To a business man, his life is all about stuff.
    To that young woman, life is all about living.

    Nuff said ?

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  5. I hear that. My wife and I thought we were smart, starting our family in our late mid 30s. We never wanted a large family, two were plenty and we got them. My youngest is 12 and being 50, I find it challenging keeping up with her - the drama just wears you out, lol.

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    Replies
    1. I can imagine.

      It was tough when my friends didn't have kids and we had three, but now I've buddies pushing 60 dealing with teenagers. Yikes!

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  6. Kids, what's kids? OH yeah, I did have a couple of them. . . Got one left.

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    Replies
    1. . . . and he's right down the road too.

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