It’s my birthday! No, I don’t want birthday wishes or anything. So, why am I telling you this? Because I’m struggling with getting older. There I said it, truth is out. I just don’t like adding another year to my age and not being able to do anything about it.
You might be wondering how old I am, or maybe you already know. The truth is, I just can’t say the number. Why? Because I don’t want to! I also have a perspective of what my age looks like. And I just I don’t feel that old.
My perspective on my age and how I feel are miles apart. For years now, I have joked with my granddaughter that it’s my 29th birthday. Every year, she plays along with me, even though she knows it’s not true. Of course, when she was younger, she was a bit confused that each year I was the same age. Going back to not feeling my age, the truth is, I feel young! Sure, maybe it’s not 29, but it’s certainly not… Nope, ain’t gonna say it.
OK, when I look in the mirror, I see that I am not 29. There are true signs of aging that just happen over time. Yep, there are wrinkles and sagging that wasn’t there when I was 29 or even in the last several years.
I don’t feel I am alone in dealing with the difference between what our perspective of an age is and how we are feeling. Haven’t you heard that 60 is the new 40, 70 is the new 50, etc.? So, if I’m the new 40, what does it mean? Well, studies are showing that people are living longer today, they’re healthier, and they’re enjoying life more. Bottom line, older people are feeling younger these days, and I am one of them!
There is even more really good news: today, the average age for someone moving into a nursing home is 81. In the 1950’s, it was 65. Also, it’s not uncommon for someone to retire earlier and then start a totally new career. Men and women in their 60’s, 70’s and 80’s are running marathons. Seniors are not just sitting in an easy chair watching the news; they are out teaching and taking classes, traveling. Seniors are just getting the most out of life.
So, with all this good news, why does a number bother me so much? Being a Life Coach, I know it’s a mindset. Something to get over and move on from. But I don’t’ want to. Yes, I know that aging is natural, and age is a perspective. But I still carry the image of past loved ones who at my age looked and acted so much older. I’m not them! I feel young!
So, what do I do? Well, for today, I will enjoy the celebration that my husband and family planned. I will have some fun and hold my head high as I celebrate my 29th birthday again!