Have you ever seen a dog drool when you're about to give them a delicious treat? That happens to me when I eat chocolate. Apparently every time I pop a piece of the divine confection, I lose complete control of my salivary glands and, upon looking in a mirror, find little puddles of chocolate have accumulated in the corners of my mouth. Gross. I've been told one does this involuntarily as they get older and that other unpleasantries may come along as well. Like having unsightly gas at the most inopportune time. And not being able to hold your pee when you cough or laugh. What about leaning over to pick up something off the floor? My good friend tells me when she and her husband get in and out of the car you've never heard such a ruckus going on. Oh, the grunting and the groaning uttered! You have a little more trouble moving about, a little more trouble hearing, a little more trouble listening because you fall asleep so easily, and generally just a little more trouble doing the simple things that came so naturally in youth. I'm not sure I like all the little inconveniences getting older brings.
Recently I've pondered the act of growing older and there's a lot to be said both good and bad over this fact of life upon planet earth. We all know that the act of growing older is no respecter of persons; everyone grows older. The only alternative to growing older is growing -- well, dead, and I wouldn't consider that growth at all. So every birthday, I silently say a prayer of thanks for another year lived. However, I cannot deny that sometimes I long to go back to the days of my youth when the living seemed easier and more carefree and when I felt invincible (even though I surely was not). But then I think of the wisdom I've attained over the years and, hands down, I'll take that wisdom any old day, even with the undependability, insufficiency, and inadequacy that having an older body sometimes brings. What use is a strong body if you have no smarts about you? Where a strong body will carry you a long way in life and has much to be said for it, wisdom will carry you even farther; it might even save your life if called upon in unison with the right actions. I once heard someone ask another which they would rather have, youth or wisdom. The answer received? Well, I'd really rather have wisdom in a young body. I second that emotion. That would be the perfect scenario in a perfect world, but not reality in this one. So I choose to focus on the good of growing older. Growing older lends you opportunities that youth does not. Like drawing your Social Security (not there yet). Like being able to get into the movies cheaper (so there!). Like a senior discount at the Golden Corral. Like not having to worry as much about being misunderstood because frankly, as you age, you care less and less about what others think. Like being allowed (and forgiven) to say things you wouldn't dared have said when you were 25. As my mom got older, she lost every bit of her filter when it came to what she said. I'm not sure she ever really had a filter when it came to words, though. We never knew what was gonna come out of her mouth at any given time. And, even though, sometimes we were taken back by what she uttered, we could always count on her for a good laugh! Laughter is the true medicine that heals the (non-serious) ills of old age. Not taking yourself too seriously is the spice that flavors life, and especially as you grow older. So if you are one of the millions who have found themselves looking in the mirror lately, trying to figure out exactly how you got to this place and how quickly it seems you got here, I challenge you to focus on the good. Don't get me wrong, I know it's sometimes harder to focus on the good than the bad, but being a half-full-glass kind of girl is so much better than a half-empty-glass one. Being able to laugh at the challenges older age brings is the key to not only enduring but enjoying this time of life. And for those of you who cannot relate because you are still in the silver days of youth, just remember this: Your time is definitely coming.
One other thing that I don't especially love about getting older? All those unsightly chin hairs that seem to spring up when you know there's not a tweezer anywhere in sight. Lesson to be learned here: ALWAYS carry tweezers in your purse. One thing I love about getting older? Being able to walk on the beach in your swimsuit and not be judged for the rolls you absolutely did not have in your twenties.
So let the jiggles jiggle, the bulges bulge and the chocolate drool... here I come, Golden Years!
Posted by CC
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