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July 23, 2010

What Does Age Have To Do With Being Old


When I was eighteen years old and newly married, I thought my then husband's cousins in their early thirties were so old and so wise. I looked up to them and wanted to do things like they did. The cousin's wife taught me to make lasagna. She taught me how to add bleach to the washing machine to have sparkling white clothes. For some people these little tidbits would be taught by their parents. Since those teachers were missing in my life, I needed to catch up. I didn't even know how to write a check.

When I turned thirty I was a mother of three wonderful children and I was in the process of getting a divorce. That was the only birthday that upset me. I was depressed for a week before my thirtieth birthday. My soon to be ex was living with his girlfriend and I did not have any adult friends.

I only remember my ninth birthday which I wrote about here. I remember the twenty first birthday. I remember the week of the thirtieth birthday. And that is all. No other birthdays are etched in my memory. I think that is because basically I live each day as it comes. No one day is more important or appreciated more than any other.

Lots of interesting things have taken place in my life since my thirtieth birthday. I am over twice as old now. I am married to the only man who is interesting enough and challenging enough to make each day a new day to look forward to.

Would I have been able to see into my future when I was eighteen or when I turned twenty-one hanging out with the senior citizens at the Lawrence Welk show?

I now understand that how I think about myself is what drives the getting old propaganda. I walk around the house in shorts and bare feet and am more relaxed than I had been as a young mother working to support three kids. I have time to read in peace and quiet and listen to music. I have more interest in world wide news than I ever did. I have an open mind and am encouraging of other people pursuing their dreams whether I agree with them or not. I have learned things aren't all about me. Age is how I take care of myself and how I continue to learn and grow as a woman. I have gained some perspective about what "old" is and in my opinion old only applies to leftover cheese in the frig, not to human beings. I have learned so much in my lifetime and along the way I learned to appreciate the elderly folks who have some funny stories and some wisdom to share with the younger folks.

38 comments:

Ms. Anthropy said...

Good attitude!

Bob Bushell said...

Ah, a different scale. Looking back and forward, you can make out most things. If you can't understand it, ask another one?

Cinner said...

I love your attitude, I think you are in a wonderful time in your life, as I have thought from other posts as well. You have more you time for you, enjoy it all, I know you will, Age is just a number proving we are living and growing every year, if your young at heart we will never grow old, take care, have a great weekend. hugs.

Opaque said...

It is true that some elements of maturity comes with age. But, that is not necessary. I think no matter how old you are, if you are young at heart, it will show! Growing old is the way of life, growing up is the choice of life.

LL Cool Joe said...

I couldn't agree more, in fact I was so much older when I was younger.

Rock Chef said...

It is said that Youth is wasted on the young...

IMO age is a mental thing - I have met 16 year olds who are "Old" and 80 year olds who are younger than I am.

I love that you are enjoying life so much now - you seem to have had some really tough times so you deserve it!

Brian Miller said...

smiles. i like the way you measure old...i know those that are old by thirty...and those twice that age that are young...

Stacy (the Random Cool Chick) said...

Age is only a number... :) I love your perspective, Techno! :)

Rock Chef said...

Me again.

Your attitude really shows in your writing. Until recently I thought you were in your late 30s or early 40s...

BLOGitse said...

I'd love to meet you and talk with you...I'm sure we'd have long and interesting convesations...

blueviolet said...

I think you've done it. You've hit that place of contentment in life that so many people never find. I hope I will be the same way.

ellen abbott said...

I have always tried to live in the now. You just never know what may happen tomorrow. I turned 60 this year and don't feel much different than I have since I was about 40 when I went through a sea change. Old is definitely a mental state. When we are young we confuse body age with 'old'. The one does not necessarily go with the other.

deb said...

your spirit is so admirable.
married at 18 ,
yikes

DJan said...

I love that illustration! It does seem that age is a relative thing, and it certainly helps to have a partner who is stimulating to be with, health, and your many blessings. You are a talented blogger, too, which you forgot to mention!

Ina in Alaska said...

I agree. We are so cocky and full of ourselves when we are young adults. Then as we get more life experience we mellow and realize there are many complications out there in the world of our family, friends and neighbors and we become more tolerant. Hopefully. xoxo

Jeanie said...

I just love what your picture shows regarding your topic. I too love being the age I am and very much agree when you say "Age is how I take care of myself and how I continue to learn and grow as a woman." Today is good and if I do my best with it I can't ask for more.

willow said...

Yes, it's cheese.

Pseudo said...

One day I was thinking about how fast life goes during middle age and I decided it is because we only really count the moments when we are living our truth. When we slip away from that, it is just busy bee ness. Since I have to work and have to do chores, I decided to stop treating these things like time taken away from my life, but learn to appreciate each moment, whether it is as thrilling as a day body boarding or as mundane as doing the laundry.

Gerry Boyd said...

thanks for sharing your wisdom.

Kristina P. said...

I need to have a better attitude about getting older. I was thrilled to turn 30. And now as I creep towards 40, it freaks me out!

Jason, as himself said...

Fantastic thoughts on aging. You're looking on the bright side of things, and I hope to do the same when I'm old. Oh, wait. I guess I already am.

secret agent woman said...

I have often thought that I am far more comfortable in my own skin in my forties than I ever have been. There is so much good in life.

Kulio said...

I love that attitude!! And I wholeheartedly agree - getting older is all in the mind, and while I don't especially love having the years pass so quickly, I feel that I'm able to enjoy life more as I age. Yeah!

Maggie May said...

This was a good post.
I am practicing living one day at a time & this has not come easily for me. However, if this is easy for you, then you are a very fortunate person.
It is a really good attitude to have.
I can remember being very het up about becoming 30 but not 40, 50 or 60. I remember age 7 and 21 but all the rest have faded.

Maggie X

Nuts in May

Vinny "Bond" Marini said...

Only a number...I exist with what I call my 'sparks of insanity'...those thoughts and desires that Keep me going and laughing and loving...

Maggie said...

What a wonderful post. You are right age is just a number. I have friends who are all of different ages and we really love and support each other all the time. It is your inner soul that counts. :D

Everyday Goddess said...

I have never felt better, now that I am firmly middle aged.

I could hang out here for a long time!

Betty said...

I love your attitude. I´m sure no one will call you old, because you for sure don´t sound it. I hope I can have such a great insight to getting older.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

Lovely post, Babe! I have never related very well to my age either - when I was young, everyone I knew, including my then husband, was much older, and now I have friends of all ages. It's mostly irrelevant. And it's so very true that attitude is what keeps us young, so you truly have it aced.

Life with Kaishon said...

I have loved growing older. As I look back at my twenties and late teen years I shake my head....
I just don't know what I was thinking.

I am thankful for each day that God blesses me with. Each and every day.

Wandering Coyote said...

Lovely post, and timely for me as I just turned 36 yesterday...I had a hard time with this one, actually, more than I blogged about. Not so much the aging thing, but the "what have I done with my life?" thing.

I always loved that Bob Dylan song "My Back Pages." The idea of "I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now" really resonates with me. Even though I'm only in my mid-thirties, I feel younger than I did even 10 years ago, when I was struggling with all kinds of stuff.

Great, resonating post, Technobabe! Thank you!

#1Nana said...

This post rally spoke to me. Since I retired I have found a peace that I didn't have before. I have learned to let go and just be...and respect the right of others to do the same. I wish I had developed this attitude years ago. Perhaps wisdom does come with age and some people get their wisdom at earlier ages.

beth said...

i love this.....
you don't stop playing because you get old....you get old when you stop playing !

Syd said...

It is good to live one day at a time, making each one count.

Berni said...

They say 60 is the new 40 and getting younger all the time. I suppose now I am 63 I am wiser than I was at 20, I hope so. More skeptical, cynical and judgmental I think, maybe when I hit 70 I will have dealt with those failings and then the new 70 will be 30 since time seems to be going faster now.

Unknown Mami said...

Thank you for this. I always like to hear people's perspectives on aging especially if they are positive.

The Empress said...

This picture here makes me cry. I worked in a nursing home when I was a teenger, and one dear sweet lady there said one day, "you look in the mirror. and want to throw a rock through it. THAT IS NOT what I look like." I know what she meant.

Marla said...

I so agree with you! Caring for the elderly people in my life really opened my eyes up to so much. I am thankful.