To all my readers,
Please enjoy the following insights from my first guest-blogger, Marion Lee. Her thoughts will clearly reveal why I cherish her perspective and friendship.
My 79th birthday has proven to be more of a hurdle than anticipated. Comments like “…in your 80th year now” – even compliments – carry more negative weight than they should. Why does 80 seem old? Perhaps because there are memories of folks not revealing their age until they were 80 and then the years became a medal of sorts, a bragging right.
However, bragging rights now don’t begin until age 90 and we read of many celebrating their 100th birthdays. For me, all I really should need for optimism is to recall the many accomplishments of my own mother after age 80. I do that from time to time.
So I’ve been pondering the meaning of the expression “growing old gracefully”. It seems a euphemism but I have come to some conclusions, or considerations, that are acceptable, at least to me, at least for the time being.
Grace has little to do with appearance or means. It comes with acceptance but not passive resistance, honest recognition of increasing limitations, patience when it seems you are coming apart at the seams.
Grace is learning that slow is better than stall or stop. One can still keep in step although
playing ‘catch up’ a lot of the time.
Grace shows reasonable and responsible independence,
understands that what at first seems unnecessary and annoying advice is caring
acknowledges limitations but declines to see them as decline,
allows some cooperation with those offering assistance but continues with regular
routines as much and as long as sensible,
adapts, finding new ways to continue being a contributing member of the family and
Grace comes from the heart,
befriends, listens, commiserates, encourages, shares;
is a product of quiet introspection, regarding what is with optimism, not what was with
My observation is that to age well one has to make friends with Patience, Prudence and
Gratitude and thus will become acquainted with Grace.
There once was a woman from Dexter,
The term “elderly” clearly vexed her,
But when along came Grace Fully
Age became less a bully
And it no longer seemed like a specter.
Born near Gananoque, Ontario, Marion graduated from Roberts Wesleyan College. Manhattan, the Adirondack Mountains and the Southern Tier are places she has called home. In retirement she and her husband, Russell, live near Dexter, in the farmhouse which his family has called home since 1843. Writing having been a hobby as long as she can remember, she now endeavors to pen lifetime experiences in memoir form.