Being older has it’s benefits. At my current age, fifty and a half, my kids are grown. Although they are on their own, I assume they will always need their mommy. Aunt Flo has left the building, but she apparently left the furnace on high, and it randomly heats me in dramatic episodes. I’m more accepting about who I am, what I look like and what I have.
Most importantly I feel like I know better now. I know that drinking bourbon neat will aggravate my ulcer. I know to plan ahead, and try my darnedest to accept when plans fall through. I know to not worry about what other people think of me. What do I care if a person doesn’t approve of me? And, I know that the disdain of the young, or pretty much anybody, is wasted energy. Those who feel the need to wield their disapproval based on age haven’t realized that a) they too, God willing, will some day be older and b) that as previously mentioned, their approval means nothing to me.
Ageism is stupid. It’s probably the most asinine isms there is. Assuming that being young and beautiful is better than being older and wiser is incredibly short sighted.
Of course, I miss the body I had back then, less for the beauty and more for the body strength I had. But I wouldn’t trade everything I know now to have it back. I like being more thoughtful.
I may still be judgmental, but for very different reasons. Superficial criticism is lazy. Like name calling, it’s something that should be left on the playground. Now, if I judge something it’s based on the motivation behind an action. And in truth, my goal is less judgement and more to understand where they are coming from and what is causing a person to act as they do. It helps me process the ghastly and heinous.
I was reminded recently that I am rich. I’m not wealthy, but I have a rich life. My needs are met, and I’m comfortable. It’s important to hold onto that perspective in order to ride through the unexpected or unplanned.
I like to say, “I’ve waited my whole life to be this age.” It’s a statement that is always true. At this point I’m looking forward to how much more I’ll know when I’m seventy and a half.