The older I get, the less I want to say. I can’t help but think of the opening lines to “Crusades” by August Burns Red: “I use to be so young, and invincible. The mistakes of my youth are finally catching up to me. The face that stares back in the mirror should carry nothing but pride.” I echo those feelings and in my brief time here, I feel like I’m so much less certain about things than I was when I was slightly younger. I was more certain about my views on faith, on goodness, on honour, on just about everything. I thought I knew what was true, black, white and grey. I wrote more often, thinking I was putting out salient observations about the nature of it all. Now I look back, and it all seems so much more complicated than what my younger self thought.
The older I get, the less I want to say. “It’s Not Enough” by Dustin Kensrue outlines so many life accomplishments, many laudable, many that I have so desperately desired – and yet it seems to suggest that none of these things are enough to “make me whole.” What is important and worthwhile? Family? Friends? Connection? Service? Honour? Wisdom? Happiness? Peace? Having abandoned so much of these in my own ways, by various life decisions and by leaving home, I question at my core what makes for a good life. As I reflect on my decisions and on how they have shaped me, I honestly wonder if I have done more harm than good to myself, and if that even matters.
The older I get, the less I want to say. One of the fundamental purposes of writing this blog was so that I could leave something, some record or tracking of my thoughts and reflections for my offspring, that they might understand me better, or at least see how I got to where I am – and judge for themselves whether I was right or wrong. And yet, I confess that I do not know if that shall ever come to pass. And then I question as well if that matters, whether I should continue to write, and to what ends.
The older I get, the less I know. And yet like a broken record, I remain fairly certain that love is the key, and that it is the right driving force. You can’t necessarily learn things through love, as it will never teach you what happens at the center of a star, what lies at the bottom of the sea, or what the fabric of ultimate reality is. But properly exercised, love can direct you to do the best, perhaps the most worthwhile things with your time here. It’s too bad that the older I get, the more I realize that love is something I know very little about.