Frank Fiore – Novelist & Screenwriter

January 17, 2013

Passing of the Elders

Filed under: Frank Remarks — Frank Fiore @ 11:24 AM

Sooner or later, a generation moves into the position of being the elders of a society. My generation, the post-war generation, has been moving steadily into that position as our parents, also known as the Greatest Generation, are quickly passing away.

A term has entered the lexicon for my generation – the ‘sandwich generation’ – given to many of us who have seen their children leave the nest only to be replaced in many cases by our elderly parents – the current elders of our society – who we needed to care for.

The term for my wife and I is a ‘club sandwich’. Those in their 50s or 60s, sandwiched between aging parents, adult children and grandchildren.

Becoming a parent to an aging parent presents extraordinary challenges to my generation. Having raised our children, we were faced with being caregivers to another type of child – our aging parents.

When my dad died the day after New Years and my wife’s mother just a few days later – both in their 90s – these deaths have given rise to contemplating my generational position in the scheme of things.

Instead of embarking on the promotion of my new book of short stories, I found myself in the middle of planning two funerals.

Even more, I now find myself one of the elders of my generation.

There is no one ahead of us. A final infinity looms before my generation and I feel the cold wind of generational solitude against my face. But also the cold fact that we are now responsible – as the elders of our society – to apply whatever wisdom we have acquired.

Will we apply such wisdom as well as the Greatest Generation did – our previous elders?

That remains to be seen.

 

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