Lessons and Light from My Youth
Paul H. Price
Childhood is the very foundation of adulthood. The ideals and expressions of life we hold in our adulthood have their origins and rudiments in the ideals and expressions of life we encounter and gather and live out in our youth. Be they feelings of worth or worthlessness, the vigor and hope of making something of ourselves, or an acquiescence to the belief that things of consequence are beyond our reach, or the lens of optimism or of doubt with which we view our own existence, all have their budding and beginnings in the experiences, or lack of experiences, of our childhood. And growing up in the 1950s and 1960s was at a very unique convergence of circumstances of combined societal, economical, political, spiritual, and cultural seismic shifting perhaps unlike any other era. We were a nation barely emerging from decades of world-wide wars and economic ruin and social survival, trying now to find our footing and our own stride and our equilibrium and our very identity. Never were we more communally encased and even secure in, and at the same time struggling to break out of, our traditions, our superstitions, our ignorance, our fears, our limitations, and our collective innocence.