L´earning to Love
Gloria Ornelas Hall
Get a Life
Loving is not about making others ‘your life’ or as Joyce C. Hall, creator of Hallmark cards, would have had it back in Kansas in 1910, be “a reason for living”.
Relationships have changed throughout the ages as gender and sex participation evolves in society and politics. The rules for relationships for my parents and their parents are totally different, to the rules in relationships today and even different from those among younger generations.
The Lost Generation born between 1883 and 1900 describes those who fought in World War I, with relationships working side by side in the mills and mines to build a country from immigrants. The G.I. Generation, born from around 1901 through 1924 includes the veterans who fought in World War II, during the Great Depression and describes relationships that eloped to break away from Puritanical limitations. The Silent Generation, born between 1925 and 1945, includes those who fought during the Korean War, much more aware of social acceptance as radio and cinema created ‘popularity’. The Baby Boomers, from 1946 to 1964, marked an increase in birth rates after the War, rekindling hope in relationships as existential nihilism ended. In the 1960s, young adults and teenagers started the Hippie movement, making free love their banner with the introduction of ‘the pill’. The Generation X , from the early 1960s to the 1980s included those targeted by financial markets for sales, with relationships related to alcohol and fashion. The Generation Y, also known as Millennials, describes those born in the turn of the century, ranging somewhere from the latter 1970s to the early 2000s, accelerated by ecstasy and artificial ‘uppers’, as ADD and ADH became popular, with no commitment in relationships . The Generation Z are those born after the early 2000s, with relationships identified with ecology, equity and a New Age order.
So when young adolescents today, try to develop their independence and still have their parents ‘fussing over them’, they often say “Mom, get a life” and they’re right. Where traditionally, we as parents devoted our time to our children, having had them be part of our bodies in pregnancy; having had them need us in childhood to survive; and having had them as learners in adolescence, as they become independent, they require us parents to shift the axis of our priorities, re-taking our own lives. The same holds true for our lovers. We cannot make them ‘our life’.‘Getting a life’ requires retaking everything that spurs our inner passion. Physically: sports, dancing, travelling; emotionally: music, movies, art; rationally: studies, writing, teaching and spiritually: reading, contemplation and 're-learning how to love'. With it, however, we must also exact respect for our own right to independence.