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I was served by the Baby Boomers in my life

Jan 04, 2020 03:42PM ● By Arianne Brown

“OK Boomer” is a popular statement that is making its way around social media and in conversations nationwide.

The two-word phrase may sound benign, but it really isn’t; it is blatant dis- respect for the Baby Boomer generation born between the years of 1944 and 1964. Many are using the phrase to discount anything that our parents and grandparents say -- even blaming them for recent economic hardships and unhealthy diets.

I became aware of “OK Boomer” during one of my favorite past times: having a text conversation with my daughter, where we communicate entirely in GIFs.

During our conversation, she disagreed with something I said, and big “OK BOOMER” flashed in bright colors on my phone.

I had no idea what that meant, so enlisted the help of Google to translate what my daughter meant. While I took no direct offense to the message, as one who sits right on the border of Gen X and Millennial (1982), it bothered me.

Despite what the younger generation may say about the Baby Boomers, I’ll say that I’ve been served my whole life by people born in this era.

It was the Baby Boomers who came about after war, the Great Depression, and more war and heartache to bring a rising generation of hope to a country that needed just that.

Baby Boomers were raised by parents and loved ones who were doing their best despite being subject to mankind and devastation at its worst.

It was during their time when a country that was wrought with racism, that the idea of equal rights was brought to light, and we began to see each other as brothers and sisters.

Peace, love and rock-and-roll took the country by storm as teen and young adult Boomers tried to make sense of a world of senselessness. Some took to exploring the great outdoors like my dad, becoming a river guide on the Snake River. My mom immersed herself in the arts.

There were those who threw them- selves into work, trying to create a better life for themselves and their children. Things like student loans were put in place to allow everyone a chance at a quality education to provide more gainful employment. Each scenario progressed with Baby Boomers growing through adulthood taking with them experiences from years previous into family and work life. And they did their best.

As a beneficiary of those life experiences having been raised by two Baby Boomer parents and countless other aunts, uncles, neighbors and teachers, I am forever grateful. And just like it was the responsibility of their generation to carry the torch that burned heavy with a hardship, it is my duty to carry the torch that also carries with it lessons to be learned.

As I carry that torch, I hope to make it a little lighter for the generations that follow, but I’m sure I will make mistakes that will inevitably need to be fixed. My kids and grandkids may mock me, and I them.

So, rather than ending the conversation too soon with a callused two-word phrase, how about we take a look at the service that was provided to us by people doing their best to make life better as we work toward doing the same for those to come. (Brown is a Serve Daily contributor.)