Friday, August 19, 2011

At Any Age

Fourteen and forty. Sixty and twenty. Five and twenty-five. It doesn't matter. No, wait. It does.

My nieces and nephews live far away. On my trip back to my roots, I had time with my nieces and nephew whom I have seen only few times over their growing up. Conversations are always a little stilted until you catch on to the rhythm then they feel more comfortable.

I grew up sitting on the periphery of adult conversations. Visiting was a popular pastime back then. It was a day when children were seen and not heard. That was fine with me, because I was shy and really didn't have much to say to any adult let alone another child. I guess I've made up for lost time.

"Why didn't she talk to us, Grammy?" my granddaughters asked after a friend came to visit.

I didn't know how to answer. I always try to recognize children when I go visit. I don't always feel comfortable when the kids are unruly, but it is what we do, isn't it? At a young age, the attention we receive from an adult tells us that we are important. When we are around twelve, we try to avoid adults preferring family pets for conversation. Teenagers prefer hang with their own kind. Then something happens. A child goes off to school. Even adults seem to prefer their own.

Once we are required to be on our own, we seem to find conversations pleasurable, informative. Spending time in conversation is rather nice. Going home to see family takes on new meaning. Parents and grandparents aren't so bad any more.

I spent the most time with my niece, Whittney. She is a working woman also attending college. There is an ease that comes with time spent. Ease that graduates from childhood discomfort into adult companionship.

I love conversations that include all ages. Conversations skills are important no matter the matter the age difference.

1 comment:

  1. I remember the days when visiting was a major form of entertainment. Not TV or surfing the Web or doing the many other things we do today. I think we've lost something.