OLD AGE IS A GIFT
The other day a young person asked me how I felt about being old.Old Age, I've decided, is a gift.
I was taken aback, for I do not think of myself as old. Upon seeing my
reaction, she was immediately embarrassed, but I explained that
it was an interesting question, and I would ponder it, and let her know.
I am now, probably for the first time in my life,
the person I have always wanted to be.
Oh, not my body ... the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the
sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person
that lives in my mirror (who looks like my mother!), but I don't
agonize over those things for long.
I would never trade my amazing friends,
my wonderful life, my loving family for
less gray hair or a flatter belly.
As I've aged, I've become kinder to myself,
and less critical of myself. I've become my own friend.
I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making
my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need,
but looks so avante garde on my patio. I am entitled to a
treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.
I have seen too many dear friends leave
this world too soon; before they understood the
great freedom that comes with aging.
Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the
computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon?
I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60 &70's,
and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love ... I will.I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body,
and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to,
despite the pitying glances from the jet set.
They, too, will get old.
I know I am sometimes forgetful.
But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten.
And I eventually remember the important things.
Sure, over the years my heart has been broken.
How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one,
or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet
gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us
strength and understanding and compassion.
A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and
will never know the joy of being imperfect.
I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have
my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs
be forever etched into deep grooves on my face.
So many have never laughed, and so many have
died before their hair could turn silver.As you get older, it is easier to be positive.
You care less about what other people think.
I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned
the right to be wrong. So, to answer your question,
I like being old — it has set me free.
I like the person I have become.
I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here,
I will not waste time lamenting what could have been,
or worrying about what will be.
And I shall eat dessert every single day
(if I feel like it).
(Contributed by Gabrielle who lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico)
Something wonderful is happening to me and i can't help but blog about it. It is this feeling where i find myself lingering just a bit longer in order to absorb.
For someone who is often classified as impulsive this is something major. i am as a matter of fact feeling something like," So finally i have arrived !"
Sometimes i owe it to my own nature of starting personal projects to make life interesting even when things seem to be going haywire. Something to look forward to, even when there are very serious matters hanging over your head robbing you of your time and energy. The self imposed projects have helped me find my equilibrium for not only do they provide refuge from agony and distress but also get me energized with more optimism. My projects that range from the most mundane to something very creative and original are like welcome tea breaks in my day to day life. That sure could be one reason i can't remember the last time i got bored.
Other times i feel that i should give due credits for this transformation in me to the people and the happenings around the world . Why else would i bother to take time out and know what ATONEMENT really means when the local tabloid screamed something like, *******'s day of atonement.
i remember seeing the movie 'Atonement' a couple of years back and thought i understood it all. But what i actually understood was just the story although it didn't even occur to me then that i really didn't understand the meaning of the title of the movie well enough. i was happy with the drama which i had just viewed and liked it in it's entirety as a good story, acted and played well by the characters.
This is just one example i have cited about how i am on a knowing spree at my own pace and without any pressures.
But most of all i feel it is this wonderful age of being in the middle forties when you begin to see clearly what it is that really gives you joy. This age when you cease to follow blindly and start looking into what satisfies you. Actions have a definite purpose now directed towards your own enrichment. And i guess one is more adept at doing this now than ever because now you are in no hurry, rather you are calm but eager to assimilate.
This freedom of living on my own terms at my own time schedule, doing what i want to do is actually very rewarding when with each simple step i am gaining a lot more.
Needless to say then that i am living each day now with that secret thrill of what new i shall be stumbling upon next and how exciting it would be to search and know more. It's akin to that feeling you get when gazing at the starry night you sight a shooting star and you are just thrilled to have sighted it.
It could be new words like i have mentioned or anything else. Point is, there is no anxiousness just the sheer joy of the realization that i do have an inclination now.
Just the other day it was a word but today i'm delving into the realms of art. Tomorrow it could be something else. And the best thing is that i don't feel any regret that i had missed out on these earlier rather i feel glad that today i have the inclination and the time.
i can't remember which of my friends had forwarded me the beautiful words and the touching picture that accompanied it but i foraged my 1091 emails to get to this particular forward. It took me a lot of patience but for me it was easy this time. i retrieved the mail and tried calling my friend who sent me wisdom but was unable to get her on the telephone. Silently i thanked her for it is only now that i want to linger on this forward and my friend.