Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Later on...

In my last post, I said that I would explain my take on celebrating my birthday, the 'milestone', the hating life, etc. later on... Well, it's later on and I think it's high time I do that.

First of all, I need to start by saying to my friends and especially my family, that I hope I in no way sounded ungrateful for the birthday wishes and the party. I am truly grateful for everything because without all of you, I would have nothing, I would be nothing.

So let's back up and get a sense of where this is all coming from. All my life, I was always proud of my age and never worried about birthdays, no matter which one came along. I had always looked young for my age so that made it a lot easier. Not to mention the fact that I had a lot more going on, on a daily basis and didn't take time to think much about those kinds of things. I was widowed at 24 with two small boys, remarried at 28, had another boy at 29 and divorced by 38. And let's just say that the single parenting part started long before the divorce was final. So yes, I was too busy for thoughts about age.

I actually still felt that way up until probably sometime during the last year or two. There are so many reasons for my way of thinking to change.

One day you look in the mirror and say, "OMG, when did that happen?" "Where was I?" " Where have I been?" Not having time, or taking time, as the case may be, to notice day to day changes, all of a sudden, you're don't look like the same person that you thought you were, but you still are!

That physical change is a given and will eventually happen to everyone. But it's all the other stuff that goes along with it that has been the hardest for me to deal with.

I still have a hard time convincing myself that I am still not 18 years old, that I still don't look like I'm 18 and sometimes even that I can't act like I'm 18. And therein lies the problem...

The number...

The number that changes everything that you are (whether it did or not).

You're 18, you can vote.

You're 21, you can drink.

You're in your 30's, you're thirtysomething.

You're 40, you're over the hill.

You're 50, you're ??? I don't know what...old?

Now you're 60...now you're REALLY old... Like that one day or one year made that much difference....The invites seem to be fewer...maybe you just don't belong or fit in anymore.

I've watched people I know turn into different people when they turn a certain age and it just seems to me that it's ONLY because they feel it's expected. Well, I'm just not into that!

Hating life? Only because of the perception of me that I feel is out there... People, I am still the same 18, 21, 30something, 40ish, 50ish and plain 60 year old person I always was...Don't take that away from me.

I still want the same things, I still want to do the same things, I still want to feel a part of your lives as much as I want you to be a part of mine. Don't take that away from me.

I became part of the blog world probably about 10 months ago...first as a stalker and then a real life blogger. The stories I've read, the 'friends' I've made, the knowledge I have come to know have definitely made me a better person. I am truly grateful for that...because in that I know that I will never be alone...

It has also made me more aware or my mortality....

But that being said...

I am hoping that I can truly live up to the following:

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 kinder 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.
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 I am 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). MAY OUR FRIENDSHIP NEVER COME APART ESPECIALLY WHEN IT'S STRAIGHT FROM THE HEART!

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest!
Comments are truly welcomed!


Dottie said...

No comment necessary -- you said it all, beautifully. Age doesn't change anything -- there are old
20 year olds and there are young
90 year olds. Be proud of who you are and what you have accomplished and don't let anyone ever take that away from you!!!!

MiMi said...

What an awesome post! And, YES, you can get directions to my house because I think we would be very good friends! I would love to sit down, share a meal and chat with you!

Thanks for stopping by my blog and for your sweet comment!

Cathy said...

Thank you Mimi...I'm not sure how that post was perceived but I have sort of heard that it maybe was taken as a 'soapbox' thing. I truly appreciate your understanding!