The Truth In Growing Old
On Friday, I posted my list of new found songs I wanted to share with you , and there was one song I really wanted you to notice. One song I really wanted you to go and listen to. That song was 'The Truth In Growing Old' by Al Lewis.
Before I get into that - a footnote of sorts. I just discovered that Sarah Howells from Paper Aeroplanes, sung backing on many of the tracks on the album this song came from, and they collaborated together and have produced so many beautiful songs. I was so excited I text Samantha in like a caps lock and emoji filled fit of happiness and excitement, before realising it was 2am (oops). Don't regret it. When two of your favourite artists collaborate? Caps- lock and emojis do not do that excitement justice. Anyways...
Seasons, months, days, hours — they all seem to pass us by in quicker succession with each passing year. Spring, she is fleeting. She quietly sneaks up on us, making her presence known a bit more with each passing day. Layers start to come off, along with the cold, rough skin of winter, until one day we wake up, step outside, and breathe it in – that fresh, dewy moisture that settles over everything.
Leaves of the brightest green begin to peek out of branches and flowers slowly wake up, inching their way up towards the sky, reaching for the sunlight. When the first rays of light spread their misty glow over the ground, they open up their petals and welcome it, and we begin to do the same. Like the flowers, we open ourselves up to spring with a naked awareness that this time must be treasured. We feel the need to start over, much like the earth around us – everything is fresh, new, untouched. We know it won’t last forever, so draped in sunlight, we start chasing and catching our wildest dreams before they close their petals and go to sleep again.
I was sifting through my photo album the other day, looking for a photo that I could have sworn was taken just a few months ago. When I finally unearthed it, I was shocked to discover that it was taken back in 2011. How could so much time have passed already? The internet and the sheer accessibility of it all just makes everything so readily available, right at our fingertips, but that instant window to the world, well, there’s a downside to it. It’s far too easy to get wrapped up in the intangible, to look at other people’s pictures instead of taking your own.
The photo I was searching for was of Lucy and I, where we're sitting in a café in Glasgow, a photo taken when we least expected it. We're laughing at something, at each other I assume, and it's the photo that really captured the relationship we have. Lucy lives in Australia now, and so we no longer see each other every day, except through Skype. It's partly the reason why I constantly remind myself that friendships are valuable, especially the ones that are as old as we are. There’s a certain bond that exists between childhood friends. When we’re young, there’s so much to experience and learn, it’s nice having a close friend through it all and the bond you build within that time is one that will likely last forever. Lucy and I go way back, and she’s that one friend who I can honestly say I’ve known since birth. From getting banished from Comic Con, to accidentally borrowing a sheep, and the time we discovered that her cat Mr Darcy was actually a girl, we’ve experienced a lot together. Through all those times, she was right by my side, and wouldn't have it any other way. When she came back home for the holidays, we finally had the chance to properly catch up, probably the first time since last summer. It’s one of those friendships where we can just pick right up where we left off.
"life can take its toll, love ones come and go
But that's the truth in growing old"
But it's becoming increasingly apparent to me that not all friendships will be like that. What Lucy and I have is so rare, especially when you consider the circumstances, but it's something we're so proud of and we would never want to lose. But while Lucy and I still play such a big role in each other's lives, over that time, I've had countless friends who I've lost. People I've drifted from, or fallen out with.
It’s miraculous how much can happen in a year, yet also how much remains the same. The holidays are nearing and already the new school year is on the horizon…. this is the time to look back. 2015 will soon be yet another page of the long scrapbook that is our lives. This time, right before the dawn of Spring, is the perfect opportunity to think back and relive memories. Take the time to reminisce within yourself and revisit your own goals, and share that nostalgia with old friends. This weekend reconnect, socialize, enjoy the company of those around you… get out and about and have fun. Time has come and gone. You may have events you are proud of, and others not as much, but with every day that comes, celebrate that time. The people in your life right now will not necessarily be as prominent in your life next year, and I'm not just talking about friends. At the end of this year you could be leaving school, leaving home, and that means leaving behind everything you know. Everyone you know. Teachers, classmates, friends... even yourself.
Change is inevitable, and when you leave home, school, even if you just go on holiday for a while, the person who comes back is never going to be the person who left. I posted the other night about going into town, and rediscovering old haunts. Places I used to go with my friends, or my parents, places I've not visited in years. The change in me was so subtle that I didn't realise it until I was confronted with these ghosts of my former self.
That's the truth in growing old.