Pick more flowers!
Not that I'm already battling my twilight years at the moment but I do feel much the same ( especially right now when I have a set of chronically ill children who might not even have the chance to start their journeys ). By some odd unforeseen coincidence, I seem to have fallen into a group of like-minded individuals who are all at the least a handful of years younger - just imagine them all still in primary blues while I'm already finishing my secondary years and there you have the alarmingly significant age gap.
Even now trying to imagine Strapping Shane in blue shorts running about with chocolate ice-cream on his face boggles the mind. I'd probably have spanked him then for dirtying the carpet. I still would but for reasons entirely different now :P
Perhaps that age gap does make a difference. Sometimes I look at them struggling through their studies and find myself telling them to take it easy. Not to sweat the small stuff. That everything will somehow work out fine in the end.
Believe me when I think back to my schooldays ( seems so far away now! ), I recall the occasional fun times ( where I spent my time punkin my classmates ) but I also remember the tense nail-biting hours before the all-important exams, when missing a day of school work seemed so alarmingly calamitous. Getting a detention seemed almost akin to being imprisoned in Guantanamo to face merciless torturers. Not that my parents ever pressured me but I somehow had this unusual notion ( possibly coded in subliminal messages from my cunning parents ) that the entire universe would possibly come to a halting stop if I didn't clear my exams with a minimum CGPA.
How foolish, I know :)
If I could live those days all over again, I'd probably play truant more often. Skip more classes. Wouldn't worry all that much about homework. Even gotten drunk on cheap alcohol behind the storerooms and tossed up my lunch.
Life is short, kiddos.