Is Getting Old Good News Or Bad News?


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This may be a strange question to ask, after all we live in an age where getting old is seen as bad news. What we want is to remain eternally youthful. Millions of dollars are spent annually by people who want to remain youthful looking, even though it's impossible to turn back the clock. We may be able to make ourselves look younger, but we still remain the same age.

Youth is good, old is bad! - seems to be the slogan of the age we live in. But is getting old, by that I mean over 60, really all bad? Of course there are many disadvantages to growing old. For one thing the older we get the more likely we are to suffer from ill health, and of course we draw ever closer towards the end of our life. That in itself is a reason to think that getting old is bad news. But I think this is over pessimistic. Age has it's downside, that's for sure, but youth too has it's own set of problems. I don't think there are many who would volunteer to become teenagers again!

I will be 63 at the end of August, although it doesn't seem like 5 minutes ago that I was a young man. It seems like every decade goes that much faster. My health has declined over the years and things I would like to do are no longer possible, which is definitely bad new. I, like most people, have had my share of joys and griefs. Life is like that. However I consider it good news to have made it to the age I am, and that I live in a an age when there is a good chance that I could live into my eighties. When you think that the life expectancy for a man was about 59 (possibly younger depending on where you lived or what your occupation was) in the early 1900s, living in a time and place where for instance good healthcare is available good news. If this wasn't available I probably wouldn't still be here. One illness or another would have killed me off by now. Actually it's good news that I woke up this morning, Well at least it is for me!

When I was younger I used to be very unsure of myself and worried about what other people thought about me, sometimes to the point of not being able to make a decision. But age has taught me that the worse things I imagine could happen rarely do, and most people are too worried about what other people think of them, that they're not taking much notice of me. There is a great deal of freedom in that. It's good news that age has helped to free me of this paralysing fear.

I have found that family have become so much more important as I have got older. I know I'm fortunate as there are many who do not have this joy. But seeing my children grown up and having their own families (although we did suffer the loss of our eldest son, which I may write about sometime) is a blessing. Enjoying grandchildren and great nieces and nephews. Just this week I heard the news that I have a new great niece, although as she live on the other side of the world I'm unlikely to see her as a baby. All of these things are a great joy to me.

I'm still learning, still trying out new things, still setting myself new goals to achieve. Life doesn't stop when you get old, it just changes.

I could go on and completely bore you to death. But as far as I'm concerned, although age and declining health has it's challenges, the good news is there are still many joys to be had and many experience still to be experienced.

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