I remember clearly the day my mother turned 30. As a 6 year old, I thought she was the oldest person I knew, besides my grandparents. What did it feel like to be THAT old?
Flash forward 24 years and I am now just 8.5 years away from being Fifty.
When the crap did that happen? Wasn’t I just turning 21….last year? Didn’t I just learn to drive, discover how to balance a checkbook, and be allowed to go the mall by myself? Now I’m getting invitations from AARP in my mail each and every week, and when I go to the Walmart, those little shopping carts you drive around look like a dream.
But I refuse to give in! The calendar may tell me I am 41 years old and closer to 50 then 20, but my mind tells me…. “Girl…. you still have so much foolishness yet to do!”
Why are we taught that after we turn 30, life as we know it is over? Who decided that? Why is it that when I go to the mall, there are stores like Forever 21 and 5,7,6, and not stores like Forever 35 or 10,12, 14? And don’t EVEN get me started on swimwear…. NO woman wants to wear a skirt! Yet that is all you will find in the “mature” women’s section.
On a recent hike with some of my “mature” friends, we were passed by a group of young, sassy 20 somethings. They trekked up the mountain, with no sweat, no huffing, no moaning or grunting, and gave a few smirks as they cheerfully breezed by giving a “Excuse us” in a half chuckle as they left us in a cloud of dust.
For a few moments, I wanted to take my trekking pole and trip them. “Oops, sorry about that sweetie!” however, that would only give me momentary satisfaction and probably a lawsuit.
As we reached the top of our destination and began milling around, I couldn’t help but notice the change in roles. Those same young fellow hikers were now all sullen and quiet…. playing on their phones, and complaining about the bugs. My crew however, was climbing trees, taking silly selfies, and living it up.
Henry David Thoreau once said,
“None are as old as those who have outlived their enthusiasm.”
How true that is! Our zest and zeal for life does not need to diminish just because some of us need to eat the bluebird special at Denny’s at 3pm so we can be in bed by 8pm. Sure, I have to stop and pee every hour, and yep my body makes strange noises when I eat raw vegetables. And yep… I wear Spanks sometimes to hold everything together.
But my mind and my soul are forever young. And thankfully, I hang out with people who are the same way!
Life is too short to live the second half feeling old and feeble. Embrace the years you before you. Have fun!
Take that silly selfie.
Wear your hair like Princess Leia even if you’re 40
Wear that Christmas bow on your head
Put yourself in an animal trap
Ski down a hill completely iced over!
The important thing is to JUST LIVE! Once you lose that enthusiasm for life…. then you can join AARP. Don’t quit just because society tells you your too old. You’ll only be too old if you stop living.
So when life tells me it’s time to slow down… I just smile and say…