Tuesday, June 24, 2008

WHEN YOU GET TO BE 55

A friend sent me this one which i think is really nice...


Old Age, I decided, is a gift. I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to b e. Oh, not my body!
I sometime despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror, but I don't agonize over those things for long.
I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself, and less critical of myself.
I've become my own friend. I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio. I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant. I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging. Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon?
I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60&70's, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love .... I will. I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set . They, too, will get old.
I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things. Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.
I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver. As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think.
I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong. So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while Iam still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day. (If I feel like it)
Hmm... it is so comforting to know that one can accept growing old and not be bothered by all the negatives that comes with it. I have an aunt who has lived past 80 and she is now losing her memory and her memory lapses has become a joke among family members. Just last week I had breakfast with this aunt and she was talking about how difficult it is for her to remember events and the others started teasing her again... Relatives teasing her... asking her about my kids names and then trying to cinfuse her.
So I decided to come to her rescue. I told her, "Yee Ku Mah... (a chinese term for an aount who is the older sister of your father) do not worry about your memory loss. It is just nature's way of letting you forget all your troubles just so that you can truly be at peace. Looking at you now I can see that your face is now much more serene and peaceful... (And I said that out of sincerity. Not because I am telling a white lie to make her feel happy). She was so grateful and thank me for this observation...
  • I AM GIVEN A BODY SO THAT I MAY BE CARRIED...
  • I AM GIVEN LIFE SO THAT I MAY TOIL...
  • I AM GIVEN OLD AGE SO THAT I MAY REPOSE...
  • I AM GIVEN DEATH SO THAT I MAY REST...
  • CHUANG TZU.

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