I am actually only a few days from being 61, but 60 has such a nice round sound. My life, all our lives, move only in one direction. We have to live in the present and make flexible plans for the future. We do learn from our past experiences though, don’t we?
There are many behaviors and thought patterns I have left/am leaving behind. Some old stubborn ones (worry, fear) keep trying to push their way through to the present moment. I push back with the wisdom of age.
Our family is going through a stressful time, with Sandy’s father Butch now receiving hospice care at home. He’s a brilliant man, one of the “greatest generation,” with a long life behind him. He was at Brooklyn’s Ebbetts Field the first day Jackie Robinson played in the Major Leagues. He served on a Navy ship as an officer during the Great War (“You may have read about it in the papers,” he has often said dryly). He raised three sons, one of whom died at age 59. He drove a sports car till he was 85. All true, a full life, but the leaving is so hard.
Every turning point gives us an opportunity to reflect and change. Here are some behaviors I am giving up, especially in light of Butch’s final illness. These old habits are nothing but dead weight once you’ve reached 60, or even 30. Even a long life slips by so quickly.
- Controlling people or situations. It’s like teaching a pig to sing – it’s a waste of your time, and it really pisses off the pig.
- Trying to prove myself. My in-laws didn’t “approve” of me for a long time. I’m not religious, nor Republican, I don’t cook and I didn’t even change my last name! I am myself, I adore their son, I show respect but live according to my own values.
- Telling myself I’m too old. This is just my excuse for not learning something new or taking a chance. Butch started building an airplane in his late 70’s.
Enjoy all your moments, and stay fabulous,
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