Monday, November 24, 2003

I'm having a difficult time moving into the suburban years ...

Not sure what that's about, except that they were turbulent and hard to re-live. Thought about that a lot over the past day or so -- "drive time" is when my mind wanders back over time. There have been lots of miles over the past week, and it's obvious that I've been avoiding looking back over the period of young adulthood. It was a long time of constant and painful changes -- inevitable separations from immediate family, then re-configuring "family" from a kind of "quilt" of new acquaintances who would become my support system through very troubling years. This was the Fifties and Sixties and into the Seventies, a period when we were deconstructing the world, and building a new social structure that would carry us through the next few decades. That was the context. It should be no surprise that I'm feeling reluctant to re-examine those decades.

I'll work it through in time. It's important that this record be accurate -- or at least as accurate as memory can provide. Everything has been colored by time and events and are entirely subjective, but from this distance it still feels painful and "seismic." This was surely the most important period in my life, and what was worked out in both the micro and the macro created the foundation that holds me in these later years. In a strange way, there were times when I fully appreciated the historic era we were living in and allowed it and the strong world I'd "peopled." I know that I created that world for myself -- both good and bad -- and that it both nurtured and plagued me and mine. It was a time of learning for us all, and if life provides a steady progression toward -- who knows what? -- it's all led to this. I'm now living in the future I hoped I'd live to see, and for which I was preparing. Strange, isn't it?

I do know that I moved into my Eleanor Roosevelt/Fanny Lou Hamer period at a time when a little Martha Stewart would have been a lot more desirable for my family!

Which leads me to a thought that flashed through my head while waiting at the toll booth on the bridge -- "How can we call it 'The Middle Ages' unless we have a sense of beginning and ending ages? Just who do you suppose established that?

But it's late and I'm tired tonight... .

Photo: Rick and Bobby and young parents, Betty and Mel Reid. David was on the way and Dorian wouldn't arrive until years later. We would move into our newly-built home in Walnut Creek in about a year.