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Marilyn Heltzer: Life is all about demographics and genetics

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columns Bemidji, 56619
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

First, let’s talk about demographics. I never gave ‘em a thought in my younger years.  But as I’ve aged, I’ve been paying more attention.  Maybe it’s all the surveys and statistics, and the attention we elders have received.  

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 I’m a member of the Silent Generation. We were born between 1928 and 1945.

Then there are the Boomers.

My kids, who aren’t kids anymore, fall into that category, The GenXers  were born between 1965 and 1980 and the Milennials 1981 and on.

I took a test  put out by the Pew Research Center and discovered that my beliefs and behaviors are closer to those of the Boomers than my own, the Silent Generation. And if we believe all of the statistics and all of the studies, we surely know that it’s all about demographics.

But the older I get (see, demographics again) the more I believe that every single human being has been put on this earth as an individual, and we each have a mission to fulfill during our years on the planet. And that’s another topic: our faith journey.

We’ll get to that in a few paragraphs.

Now, besides demographics, there’s genetics. We all have inherited traits. I’ve got little eyes and a little nose and my hair went white at an early age, just like my dad’s and my grandma’s.  When my third daughter was born, the nurse asked, “Do you think the baby is okay?” I think it was those facial characteristics that troubled her.  The physician who had just delivered the baby said, “Take a look at the mother.” Yep. Those hearty genes came down through at least four generations.

Now, my own mother was a kind and caring person. I hope I’ve inherited those traits from her. But in the physical department, there’s the tendency to put on weight and oh, the big boobs. Mom had ‘em, too, God rest her soul.

She and my dad also led me into a belief system, I’m a life-long Lutheran. But again, the older I get, the more liberal I become. And that’s both politically and in what I believe when it comes to my faith.  

Yes, it’s all demographics and genetics

 And maybe music. That’s generational, too.  I can sing the tunes introduced by Perry Como and Dinah Shore and even Mario Lanza. But Miriah Carey?  Justin Bieber? Beyonce? I thought I was pretty up to date when I could sing Beatles tunes. But only Sir Paul and Ringo are still going strong. I do remember their introduction the Beatles received to the folks watching TV when the four of them were on Ed Sullivan Show. Poor Ed. He’s long gone, too.   

And we, dear aged friends, have one big adventure left. We will simply die. Some believe that there’s nothing beyond this life.

Some of us believe differently. And yes, I do believe that it’ll be an adventure that none of us is prepared for.  Which brings me back to faith. Which is, after all, the most important thing.

Easter’s just ahead. Bless you  all, dear readers.

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