As a chronicler of the baby boomers generation, I try to focus primarily on the issues and topics of most importance to baby boomers today. I also share my reflections on where we have been as a generation, as this offers valuable perspective and insights into where baby boomers are today and where we are headed in the future.
This thought pattern came into focus recently when I heard Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., comment that she did not want this heated democratic campaign to turn into 1968.
She was referring, of course, to the upheaval of the Chicago Democratic convention of 1968. This got me to thinking about 1968 in the context of baby boomers today. Think back to 1968 when you were going to school, listening to the Beatles, and thinking that your entire life was ahead of you.
Could you have imagined back then that this is what life would be like in 2016?
Could you have imagined that you would be worrying about care-giving for elderly parents, retirement savings, and health and wellness, as you desperately try to preserve your quality of life? Could you have imagined that looking ahead to tomorrow would somehow include reflections of yesterday?
Could you have ever imagined all that has taken place in the lives of Baby Boomers since the times when hair was long, flower power was the rage, and telephones had cords?
Could you have ever imagined that the men who served in Vietnam would someday be 68 years old and seeking health care from a Veterans Administration that has seemingly abandoned them? Could you have ever imagined that news would come from Social Media? Could you have imagined that most of time slotted for television news would be taken up by infomercials marketing drugs like Viagra and Cialis to your generation?
Could you have pictured in your mind that gray hair would the new normal for Boomers?
But before we get too far off on the tangent of change, let us look at the thread between 1968 and now that goes beyond the political landscape.
One Baby Boomer woman might have the inside scoop on this, for she has the same meaningful compilation of values connecting the dots of then and now. For her, it begins with family.
While some of her most cherished family members are no longer with her, the family bonds with her relatives remain as strong today as they were back in 1968 when Richard J. Daley was a political figure. Her faith in her value system remains steadfast, no matter what the test of society offers.
This is a woman with core beliefs that she still has to the present day.
These beliefs and values were based on the foundation of her life as a young girl.
For this young girl and the woman she has become, 1968 was not about protest movements but rather about learning from the example of her parents.
You can see this example in some of our commonly known sayings, such as, “The more things change, the more they stay the same," and "History repeats itself."
Life is an ever-changing, evolving, progression. But with that also comes a sense of foundation, like the concrete forming the foundation of your house.
When the house is built it always has a foundation; even though over time the house is redecorated or enhanced with new appliances, the foundation remains steadfast.
As the years pass in the house, the dishes change, the wallpaper is replaced, and the clothes in the closet go from bell bottoms to pinstripe suits, but the foundation of the house stays solid.
This is the baby boomer of then and now. This is the baby boomer of 1968 — and today.
The times change but the values stay the same.
Rick Bava founded and was CEO of the Bava Group, which became the premier communications consulting firm serving the Fortune 500 community. Bava became known for his popular blog columns “Rick Bava on the Baby Boomer Generation.” He is the author of "In Search of the Baby Boomer Generation." For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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