Aging

March 17, 2008

“At what age do most people become old and what is the secret to staying young?”

Well, since I just turned 40 in January, this question is very relevant. I may get a lot of flack for this, but it seems to me that people with children are “older” in general no matter what their age than people who are childless. I don’t know what that is exactly, but perhaps it is that they have a responsibility that far out surpasses any responsibility that those of us who are childless (at present anyway) have.

Thinking of being 40 is still a little foreign to me. I LOVED being in my 30s. I felt so much more at home in my body and in who I am. And I felt that almost instantly upon turning 30. While I still feel that way now, I guess I was thinking there would be another depth like that when I turned 40.

I know I haven’t answered the question directly, so perhaps I will come back to this question another day.

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3 Responses to “Aging”

  1. coachdavid said

    As they say – it’s a state of mind. It is amazing how many people find the best years of their lives in “old age”. I have a masters in gerontology – retired early – and now coach people on non-financial retirement planning. Make your own plan for a successful retirement now and update it as you need to – see my blog at http://coachdavid.wordpress.com

  2. My Mom sent this to me:

    Old Age, I decided, is gift.

    I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my body! I sometime despair over 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 more kind 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.

    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.)

    **********

    Even though I have no idea who actually wrote that, I am blessed to have a Mom who is such a great role model for how to be a grown-up. The things describe above may not be exactly how she is, but it certainly conveys her same attitudes.
    Thanks Mom!!!
    xo

  3. Beth Andersen Perry said

    Hi Kelly, I came across your blog while googling :). I must say, age is definately a state of mind. Much of it has to do with the health your in too. There are some days that I feel older because I wake up stiff and sore. Other days I feel like a little kid. My kids have a way of keeping me young too. They are really good about sharing things with me – sometimes more than I care to know. Perhaps the times when I feel the oldest though is when a band remakes an old song and the younger generation thinks it is an original. Ha ha. I say, “no, so and so came out with that in the 70’s or 80’s” only to find out that so and so weren’t even the original artist. To conclude, age for me is constantly changing. Everyday I wake up though and am able to face a new day, I thank God. Not because I am dying or anything, but because I am blessed to live yet another day.

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