Looking Back and Looking Forward

This picture below was taken exactly 70-years ago. I had been born a couple weeks prior and was bundled up and being held in my mother's arms. The older man on the left of the picture was my great-grand father in the derby hat. The other man was my grandfather on the right of my mother. There are four generations of my mother's family...and all are gone except for me.

Four generations of Al's mother's family

The picture below is that of my father's side of the family. The young boy in the picture is my father who was about 10-years old. The woman reading with him was his great-grandmother. The man to the right was her was her son who seems indifferent to the picture being taken. He had a son and that son is sitting in between my father and his great grandmother. That man was the boy's father and my grandfather. There are four generations of my father's family...and all are gone.

Four generations of Al's father's family

The picture below is a recent photo of Jack and Owen last summer. Owen seems as interested as I did at about his age 70-years ago.

Three generations of Al's family

If you wish to see a bit more professional picture of the two grandchildren with their grandparents, this is one that is very recent.

Al and Ann with Jack and Owen

Aside from the interesting photos that have covered nearly a century of family members, what does this leave me personally? I like the old black and white photo to connect me to the past. The color photos are nice for our family to see. However, at least those recent photos of our grandsons will link them to the Ann and me.

I just turned 70, and Ann is about to turn 65. The grandsons at the present time don't have four generations of is a limited lineage. While it doesn't cover four generations, at least it covers three. It could be limited to two without Ann and me. The likelihood of having a photo of Jack and Owen with one of their children, their parents, and Ann and I isn't very good. Add a couple of decades to Jack and Owen and their parents is very likely. However, add a couple of decades to me...I'll will have just reached 90 and Ann 85. While I have had dreams for years of outliving George Burns' 100-year mark, realistically, that is a bit of a stretch. Actually, getting to 90 and Jack and Owen having child of their own is a stretch.

That reality of their limited lineage rattles me. So what can I do about it? There are several things. Continue daily exercise and crunches. While a cardiovascular daily regime is not a guarantee of anything. However, not doing it certainly won't assure much that is positive even in the short run.

The other thing that the rattling does do is to make me more conscientious about the time that I have left in my journey through life. Teaching, traveling, and writing needs to be done more efficiently. Beyond that obvious warning, I must take the time to have fun, to teach, and share with Jack and Owen.

If all my plans and dreams come true, it will be a hoot to pose with Ann, Jack, Owen, their parents, and one of the children's own child. If I accomplish that goal, out-living George Burns won't be difficult.