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Essay on Youth and Age

By: Erin Pembroke

As a man ages, he looks back on his life. He remembers all the love, heartbreaks
and fun he had. He remembers his youth… He remembers the time when he had all the
women. Women came easily to him. And now? Nobody gives him a second thought. He
is invisible and remains so because of his appearance.

He notices how young men make passes on young women and how these women
respond to them. He notices how the young men seem to lack manners, class and
decency. They are bold and vulgar. Yet, they get their way with women. He also notices
how naïve some of these young men and women are. They only know how to “have sex”
but not how to “make love…”

You see, there are several differences between a young fellow and an older man
and one of them is that we older men woo women not just simply try to get into their
pants. Or might I correct myself and say that we older men woo women before getting
into their pants in order to actually get into their pants versus a young lad these days
simply, in a vulgar and direct way, states or asks a woman for sex.

The youth on the other hand, seem to take making love for granted and their
ability to make love also for granted. On the contrary, some older men are more than
flustered because their physical ability to make love does not seem to come as easy as it
was in their youth. The young men seem to just take their youth and the use of their body
parts for granted….

What does an aged man have to look forward to? His children are grown, some of
his best friends are gone and either his wife divorced him or is still with him. An aged
man had grand-children to look forward to, travelling and time spent with his wife. If he
is alone, he has many nights alone to look forward to. And both male and female have the
inevitable to look forward to; death.

It is with the progression of time that he dwells upon his past and fears the worst
to come. Leo Tolstoy said, “The biggest surprise in a man’s life is old age.” As a man
ages, he looks in the mirror and does not recognize himself. He looks for wrinkles,
crow’s feet, and white or gray hair. He notices that his skin does not retain the elasticity
that is used to. He also notices that body parts are not as firm or in place as they used to
be. They either hand or sag with the passing of time.

He wonders what happened to his youth. Where has his youth gone? And he
thinks he may never be handsome or beautiful again…It is unfortunate that we live in a
superficial world all about looks because an aged person and their personality may be
over-looked. An aged and single person thinks to himself, “Who could love me?” He
views himself as the beast in “Beauty and the Beast” and a young woman as the epitome
of beauty herself. What chances does an older person have at love again?
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Now, if the older person were to take on a mate who is much younger then their
relationship is looked upon as nothing but sexual attraction, for who could actually love
an older person? The older person is viewed as wanting only sex from the younger and
the younger person is viewed as wanting money, security and stability. Both their peers
may judge them and their relationship and may frown upon them.

However, nobody stops to question the real workings of that kind of relationship.
Everybody assumes the relationship only consists of sex. Sometimes sexual attraction is
the case, nut not all the time. Is it actually possible for a much younger person to actually
understand and love the much older person? Can the two of them actually share the same
interests and actually have deep and meaningful conversations? I believe it is possible for
this to occur and that it should not be over-ruled or over-looked it is.

Now, on a spiritual level, is it possible for both of their souls to connect and
recognize each other as their own equal? Who is to say that the older person is mentally
his age and that the younger person is not mature for their age? There are all kinds or
people; one that is younger than their age, one that is exactly their age and one that is
beyond their age; even the aged can act younger or beyond their age…

Age is a complex thing to understand in people. It is with age that we should

consider all kinds of possibilities in people…The problem is, are we going to allow our
human (flesh and blood) selves see age as a problem or allow our souls through spiritual
awareness to seek another? There is a difference between spiritual age and physical age.
Spiritual age is how old your soul is and physical age is the amount of time a person has
lived on Earth…

Moving on, if an aged person found someone equal to their physical age, they still
have to worry about having “baggage” from a previous relationship, insecurities,
emotional issues, physical issues and the fear of rejection in finding out if the other
person loves them. Either way, an aged person has to think about all of this and cannot
escape questioning himself, his partner, and their relationship. It is inevitable.

Lastly, the truly inevitable thing is that we all have to die, whether young or old.
It is just that the aged forget that. They see themselves as one more step closer to the
graveyard but forget that infants die young before they have a change to experience life
or that the youth die while either playing, partying or by everyday accidents.

It is scary for one to see a loved one had good hearing; excellent eating habits and
was physically active one year. Then the next year, they have lost their hearing, deny
themselves of food and are not as active as they used to be. It is scarier for me to see that
a loved one’s mind is going. They cannot remember what day of the week it is, what is
the date or the names of their children and other family members. It is scary for a person
to see an aged person close to death to revert back to the infantile stage where they want
to be held, cared for and never be left alone. The person craves for their independence yet
does not realize that their independence has already left them long ago.
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The person is actually dependent on others and does not see it. What is worse to
see is that a person’s bitterness at that age causes them to push their loves ones out of
their life to the pint that they will actually die alone. They caused their own loneliness.
They made their bed and are now afraid to lay in it. They fear dying and especially dying
alone. These are the things that I am currently experiencing in my grandmother who is
currently eighty-eight years old and I do not know what to do or what to tell her. How am
I supposed to tell her what is at the end of the tunnel when I am just now beginning to
experience life?

To conclude, while we all have to face death as being inevitable an aged person
looks back on their past experiences and wonders where their youth have gone and was
their time well spent while a young person does not appreciate what they currently have.
An important concept to remember is that age is a complex thing to understand in people.
It is with age that we should consider all kinds of possibilities in people.