Wednesday, October 24, 2007

I Agree

Received the following in an email from someone {thanx much, whoever you were!} that really spoke to me. Since I'm all lazy like that, here's what you get today...

The other day a young person asked me how I felt about being old. 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.

Old Age, I decided, is a 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.

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.)


Anonymous said...

I agree!

french panic said...


This is a weird one - for me. First, the grey hair thing I have never understood as a sign of aging as I discovered my first one at age 17 and "early" grey hairing is common on my mom's side - her sister had a full head of gorgeous white hair before she hit 30. I've never seen grey hair as a sign of aging - but there is something sad and desperate about the grey roots/skunk stripe on someone's dyed head.

It is very nice that whoever wrote this thinks of Old Age as a gift.... but I cannot count the times that an Old Person has told me how getting old sucks. Okay, mostly that's my mom, but other people have told me that too. (Body parts not working, people treating you like you're dumb or slow, more visits to the doctor, more time to ruminate over choices you have made that maybe weren't the best....)

This part actually pissed me off: "Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon?"

AAAAAAGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!!!! Some old people don't have the luxury - they have to work just as hard as they ever did! I wish I could win the freaking lottery just so I could make sure my dad never has to work again - though he does play on the computer until all hours...but he still has to get up in the morning to go to work.

Though the broken heart thing makes sense. Having your heart broken is horrible and awful, but necessary. The shitty part is knowing, at my age, that there are multiple heartbreaks to come.

Wilma said...

Frenchie, don't Panic! HAHAHA! See what I did there, with your name?

If I didn't want to hear diverse opinions on stuff, I wouldn't ask for comments.

For the most part, I agree with what the writer has to say. I agree with the tone of what the writer is trying to convey ~ that living a long life is better than the alternative, that signs of aging can be treated as a blessing or a curse & it's up to you which you choose, that I just don't care what other people think anymore.

I have been set free by living this long {36 whole years}. I do not lament over what could have been. I made up my mind a long time ago not to regret things that I've done because they all contributed to make me the fab person I am today.

Some "traditional" signs of aging are, like you said, not always a sign. I started going grey at 25.

Bruno Rocco said...

I really like this little ditty as I do agree with most of it . I think back upon my life a mere 43 years and think yes I have had a great life I do not have reason to complain . I have been dealt alot throughout the years and have taken the atitude be strong and keep going . I have finally got the attitude I don't give a shit what other people think it's my life and I'm going to enjoy it. Their have been times that as you say you have had yor heart broken , I have had to many of those to count but I have to look at the positive side and realize they only make me stronger. Their have been times where I have cried over those heartbreaks and I know they will never go away. But I also know that new and exciting things will come tomorrow and with them will come the laughter which will always keep me young.