I wrote an article on the Pros and cons of growing old.
Some people seemed a little surprised that I was so happy about it.
People are saying that growing old sounds like fun.
When I was young, I was immortal. I was going to live forever. But one of the little signs of aging is that you suddenly realise that this isn’t true. My time is finite. One of these days or years, God [or whoever] is going to come barrelling along my little road in His SUV and run me over. And that will be it.
So I am savouring every day. And I’m sorry I didn’t savour every day when I was younger. According to the Real Age Clock, I have another thirty years to go yet!! But I am going to live each and every day.
I have learned a lot on my path through life.
I have learned to have confidence in myself. I have learned that other peoples opinions of me don’t matter. I can wander down to the village in my slippers, or speak in front of a large crowd. I can type immature absurdities in my blog. If people don’t like what I do, or what I have to say then I don’t care. This is me. Provided I don’t actually do anything offensive, I can do what I like. I am what I am.
I try to lead what I would call a moral life. I do unto others as I would be done by. I bear no ill-will. Enemies are a waste of energy and life. Friends are precious.
In some ways, I have had a hard life. I have known days where I have searched down the back of cushions for a few coins so I can buy a loaf of bread. I have spent years in jobs that I hated, where the work was hard and the pay was poor. I seen the death of both my parents, and my sister. I have known worry and pain. But you can’t really appreciate the sunshine unless you have felt the cold rain.
I am free now. I am retired, but I carry on working. I work because I enjoy it. I can do the work I want to do. I earn money for the little extras in life, not because the mortgage demands it. I have learned that money is a preoccupation that is rotting society. People are obsessed with it. They think it is the key to happiness. They are wrong. The key to happiness is peace of mind.
I am blessed with a happy family. I have had thirtysomething years of marriage, and we are very happy. We have a daughter who is beautiful, intelligent and very witty. We have two grandchildren who are the real sunshine in our lives.
I earn a lot less now than I did ten years ago. I demand less than I did ten years ago. To me, happiness is not a skiing holiday every winter and a fortnight in the sun every summer. To me happiness is watching a dove sunbathing on the lawn, or a grandchild’s laughter.
Above all, I act my age. I am thirty[ish]. My passport will say otherwise, as will the aches in the joints, but they are just my body getting a bit rusty. But my age changes. Sometimes, when I play with my granddaughter, I am a five year old. But if my granddaughter bumps her head and needs a cuddle, I am a sixty year old grandad. That is nice too.
Now that I’m retired, I’m not going to take up bridge or bowls. I’m not going to join any seniors clubs. I don’t go to the Pensioners’ Christmas Dinner [as I’m entitled to] in my old place of work. That’s for old people. I’m going to carry on being a thirty year old. For the rest of my life.
They can carve that on my gravestone –
“Hear lies an old man, who died age thirty”