Estrangement and Aging
24 JUL 2023 - 3 min read
For years, I’ve tried to hold on to my fondness of rap music. I used to listen to it every spare minute, absorbing the lyrics, bobbing my head. At some point, I must’ve started feeling some degree of self-consciousness. That feeling that tells you this just isn’t exactly right anymore. I started looking into other music genres but none have stuck like rap did. It’s been a growing source of confusion for me.
Then, this weekend, a couple of friends started doing a dance they called “thirty”, “cirty”, perhaps “sirdy” - I had no luck trying to look it up. Turns out it’s called “sturdy”. I’d never heard of the dance nor the associated music.
This incident of me not knowing, together with my diminishing enjoyment of rap music, together with a weaning interest in parties and festivals, has made me wonder whether I too, am losing the fountain of youth. Now, someone older will probably read this and think: “you, losing the fountain of youth? You’re still wet behind the ears”, and, from their perspective, they’re absolutely right. But although I’ve noticed this at an early moment, it is a gradual process that sneeks up on you.
What I am starting to feel is a sense of distance, of estrangement, towards the passion and enthusiasm that younger people have towards new things. There is also a lingering sense of envy precisely at their enthusiasm. And lastly, there is a yearning for youth, and nostalgia towards the times where that person was you.
This introspection shone a light on the contrasting experiences of youth and maturity.
The advantage of being young lies in the bliss from seeing something for the first time. Every encounter shapes the young mind, imbuing an intoxicating sense of curiosity that paints the world in vibrant shades of wonder. Contrastingly, growing older bears its own fruits. It brings with it a certainty borne out of lived experience. This knowledge instills a comfortable familiarity with the world. A stability rooted in understanding and expectation.
In the face of rapid technological change and cultural evolution, it’s natural to feel somewhat disconnected, especially if you associate the past with comfort and familiarity. But through the lens of this introspective dialogue, it becomes evident that both youth and maturity have their own unique charm. Each stage of life is to be valued for its distinct experiences, offering us different ways to perceive the world around us. But, for some I reason I suspect that feeling of envy towards the young will never go away entirely.