Does every generation at some point get overwhelmed by life? Is this the condition of mankind? Or is this a symptom of modern times?
These are the questions I ask myself when I reflect on the last two years. It’s not a personal assessment, looking at these complex, nebulous, and daunting state of affairs. It’s not an existential question either.
It is the question of: Why is life in general just so damn difficult?
Maybe it is my age that makes me think this way.
In my mid-40s, I feel a kind of weight that’s somewhat new to me. Or maybe it is because I am a mother.
There was a lightness of being, like Milan Kundera wrote about much more eloquently, that I had when I thought my behavior didn’t have any real consequence.
That’s easy to feel, in a world of 7+ billion people. When you think that way, you feel both large and small. Big in that you think the only consequence you have on is yourself. Small because you realize how insignificant you are.
But in a pandemic, each person’s behavior adds up. It is a wake-up call to how inextricably connected we are to each other. It’s like the “Butterfly Effect,” where one choice can have a huge effect in a series of seemingly unrelated events.
Again, did previous generations feel the weight of our interconnectedness?
I guess it doesn’t really matter. I only know my own weight is growing heavier by the day.