The Wisdom Years

Mesmerized, I watch the snow blow across the surface of the frozen river. In the distance, a small animal runs across the ice toward the shore. A fox, maybe?

Downriver a short distance, there’s an office building on the opposite shore. I worked there a lifetime ago but it’s owned by a different business now. The other day, my granddaughter and I were out for a drive and I decided to turn off and head down memory lane to show her the building from the other side of the river.

“What did you do there?” she asked. I was a computer programmer and always struggled with that question.

“I wrote programs to pay people and keep track of sales and inventory,” I said.

“Like apps?” she asked.

“Kind of. Except we didn’t have apps back then.”

“Sick,” she said. I think that meant she was impressed.

She’s been teaching me things about current pop culture that boggle my mind. These days, if I hear a term I don’t understand I ask her what it means. We teach one another.

Those, like me, of a certain age, have entered the wisdom years. We might not have all the information but, especially if we’ve cultivated it, have instead a wealth of wisdom. The view is different from here. We see things we might have missed when we were busy and running and figuring out our place in the world. The younger ones have not yet accumulated experience and learned the hard lessons that have shaped us. We need the younger ones to help us navigate this strange, new world and they need our experience to help them grow. It’s a beautiful synergy when done well.

I know families—and ours is one now—where different generations share space in the same home. Children, parents, and grandparents. With boundaries in place for all, it can be a rich, healthy, and positive environment. (It can also be chaotic and crowded and a wonderful opportunity to grow in grace.)

I appreciate this time when our daughter and granddaughter live here with us. It’s temporary, and adjustments and boundaries are required by all, but for now, it works. More than just works, it has introduced a unique richness to all of our lives. I am grateful.


I’m a writer, reader, and creative. I thought by now I’d have things figured out, but I keep coming up with more questions. I think that’s okay. I’m here most mornings pondering ordinary things and the thin places where faith intersects.
1 comment
  1. Lovely.

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