It Comes Down to Choices: Wanda's Advice

Wanda, 85, worries that young people won’t be interested in her life lessons. I think she’s wrong about that, because her hard-won lessons for living are ones we all can use.

I write poetry for children and for the old. The media generation escapes me. I really would like to know what is going on, but it all seems as alien as the planet Mars. What could I tell them out of my experience that would have any meaning for them? In my 84-year-old case, I feel that I have lost their attention. If I could re-capture it for fifteen minutes, I would say this:

It all boils down to choices. Make a bad one in a few seconds, and live with the consequences for the rest of your life. When you are young, lots of the choices have to do with sex and relationships. Use your head, and go carefully.

If you have a chance, get as much education as you can, because it gives you options you would not have otherwise. Find out what your strong suite is, and follow up on it. Don’t be afraid to seek advice . If words are your thing, and you think you might make a writer, don’t wait until you are 70 years old as I did.

Those who make a plan for their lives have an advantage over those who just float merrily along. This, in fact, is what I did, and I had a wonderful ride – but if someone had asked me “What do you want to do with your life? You’re only going to get one.” I might have focused more, and perhaps made a difference . But no one ever did. Too late for regrets!

One must make a living, and it is not easy these days. But don’t insist on being a millionaire. Focus on making enough money to bring up your children, educate them, save and invest anything extra for your old age.

If you have children, spend time with them, doing “stuff” like going on beach picnics, going to the zoo , reading poetry and stories at bed time, making cookies, at Christmas, singing with them, using art materials( Kids clean up well.) These are things they will remember in later life.

I think I’ll stop here. If I get preachy, no young person is going to listen.

4 thoughts on “It Comes Down to Choices: Wanda's Advice

  1. I AM listening Wanda. Thank you for the advice. On making a plan, “What do you want to do with your life? You’re only going to get one.” That, Wanda, is hard to figure out. I’m in my mid-30s and still can’t answer. I guess sometimes family obligations can limit what you want to or can do.

  2. Wanda, such good advice and I feel as if we are sisters under the skin.

    When I was young and foolish, I didn’t listen to my elders. Too bad,

    I did pay for all of my errors in judgement. And, like you, I floated down

    a path with many happy memories, but now in my elder years, I realize

    I could have done so much more with my life. Too late now.

  3. Cherry,

    family obligations are excuse.Please try to follow her advice at any cost to not regret your life later.I too am learning.Will be 30 next month.

  4. I am 21 and I am really thankful for your advice. It sometime scares me, because I do not know if what I am doing would have been the best in the future. But I will try not to worry. Thank you Wanda.

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