Since I take care of my elderly parents, there are times when I dwell on the subject of aging. Now, it’s not an option to age, everyone does it, but how can I do it so I don’t end up somewhere I don’t want to be. Today in the gym aging was on my mind and as I looked around me I couldn’t help but notice that while it’s true that everyone ages, it seems to me that not everyone gets old.
There is this tall guy I see often at the gym, he walks on the treadmill, then he rides the bike and he chit chats with people. He’s got a full head of white hair, he’s very friendly, says hello to everyone and he told me that he’s 90 years old with three sons who are in their 60’s. He’s aged, but he’s not old. (I’ve noticed that he flirts with all the babes in their ’70’s) He thinks young. There’s also another lady I see often, in her eighties, she has some trouble moving around, not sure if it’s arthritis or what, but she’s there every day always with a smile and a “good morning!” Most of the people at the gym in the morning are my age or older. My mom, she’s another aged but not old, goes to the gym earlier than I do, she takes a class for seniors in the pool, and from what I gather there are many people her age, 87, and older who take the class.
But it’s not just the gym where I see aged but not old, I’ve noticed it at church as well. Seniors, some even with physical problems, have aged with servant’s hearts and they keep smiling and giving, they are not old. The Bible says that our lives are but a vapor, we are here today and gone tomorrow. Maybe the secret to aging without growing old is learning to appreciate this brief life for the blessing it is. Waking up thankful for the breath in your lungs can give you a positive perspective and attitude as you face the day. And young thinking can keep you from dwelling on slowing down and aching more.
I can’t escape aging, but I don’t want to get old. I want to be able to care for myself and hopefully still do for others for a long time. I’m a boomer, from the end of the boomer era, I think, so I probably have less years ahead of me then behind me, but when I think about my age, I have to say, other than the aches I don’t feel much different then I did thirty years ago. I realize there isn’t a lot of stuff in this life I have control over. But my thinking and my attitude are things I can control. Maybe the secret of aging without growing old to to keep thinking young and being eternally thankful.