October 16, 2019

I’d always heard people say you become more conservative as you get older. I always thought “nah, won’t happen to me, those people hate new things and paying taxes.”

Though, I’m experiencing just that – not in the republican/democrat sense, more in terms of understanding the responsibilities and paradox that comes with even the most humanist values.

Acknowledgements: Many of these insights have come from long conversations with insightful friends all over the world. You know who you are, and thank you.

November 2, 2019

Wow… that was a lot of responses. Turns out many of you identified with this…. including the people I thought had it all figured out.

I wanted to share with you one story that hit me right in the gut, from my friend Nicki:

When my brother died, the people who showed up for my parents above and beyond everyone else, including our extended family (who live in a different state), were their neighbors. They have lived in the same house for more than 30 years and, while my parents don’t actually spend much time socializing with the neighbors, the length of those relationships gives them incredible power.

After Kerry’s death, Jake and I spent a week in Boise with my parents and when we were getting ready to drive back to Seattle, one of the neighbors took me aside. She told me that her mother lives on a mountain in Japan (at which point I was like, okay, I’m ready to hear where this is going) and that the reason the neighbor feels okay with the fact that they live so far apart is that her mom’s neighbors all take care of her and look out for her on the mountain. “That’s what we’re going to do for your parents,” she told me. “So you can go back and not have to worry.”

Like you said, these aren’t people my parents would have chosen as friends, but they surrounded them with love and care in such beautiful ways, big and small. I’ll never forget what that felt like, during such a terrible time.

Candid feedback and thoughtful responses keeps me motivated. What sucked? What should I keep doing? What does this make you think about? Send me a note at tal at talraviv org

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