For the first time in my life …


SERENADE 2 SENIORSimagesCA3WUPH5For the first time in my life, I think that I am the person I have always wanted to be. I sometimes despair over the different shape my body has taken on, about the wrinkles and bags under my eyes, and I am often taken aback by the old person who lives in my mirror, but I don’t look at her often if I can help it.

I love my friends and my interesting occupations. I have a loving family who accept my changes. As I’ve aged, I’ve become kinder to myself. If I feel like eating something unhealthy or don’t feel like changing my linen, I tell myself that I’m entitled to skip a week. I have seen too many friends leave this world too soon without grasping the freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read until late? I listen to opera and classical music on full volume as long as it does not disturb my neighbors.

If I go to the beach I don’t feel envious of the young set strutting about in their bikinis, because I know something that they can’t anticipate fully – that they will get old one day too. When I lost loved ones or watched my children or grandchildren suffer unnecessarily, my heart broke. But, a broken heart gave me strength, understanding and compassion. Yes, my heart broke a few times but that organ seems to be stronger than I realized.

I am blessed to have lived long enough to have my dark hair change to salt and pepper shades and to have laugh lines forever etched into grooves on my face. So many people have never laughed and others have died without knowing the joy of loud, carefree laughter. As one ages, one cares less about what others think. Being a senior has set me free.  I am not going to live forever and while I am here, I will not waste time lamenting on what should have or should not have been or even worry about what will be.

My youngest grandson often asks me why there is an empty space next to his Papa’s grave and my reply: “Papa wanted us to be buried next to one another, but don’t worry, I am not planning to die for some time.”

And I shall drink red wine every evening and eat chocolate every single day, if I feel like it as they are the two most decadent things I can think of doing.

Cheers to you all and have a good day.

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