Grow Old With Me

IMG_1659aby Neva Bodin

Well, today is my birthday and I ain’t no spring chicken any more. I’m not sure I’d even be fit for the soup pot if I was a chicken. OK, I’m 73!

There are so many “forwards” re old age, most of them funny and almost all of them true. Recently, one said we had job security in translating cursive writing soon for younger generations! Since I’ve translated doctors’ writing for many years, I think I qualify.

I often think of the ways I’ve changed since childhood, and the ways I’ve stayed the same. Physically of course there are huge changes, which others can see more clearly.

My mirror tries to get the truth across to me, but my brain won’t accept it. When the hospital I worked at put up pictures of employees when young (I provided my nursing graduation pic) and current, back when I was in my 40’s, I couldn’t believe my boss didn’t recognize me in the younger picture! How could he be so blind?

But does anyone else hang onto their inner child the way I do? While experience and maturity has blunted some of my immature ways, or hammered them into more reasonable behavior, there are some fears and insecurities I refuse to grow out of.  I imagine I will take them to my grave. Fear of the dark is one. (And others I won’t admit to.)

Perhaps that has helped me to be more understanding and empathetic with others who deal with these insecurities and fears. I believe it also helps me get into my character’s skins more easily when I write. For they are the things of conflicts and sometimes erratic behavior.

“Grow old along with me! The best is yet to be, the last of life, for which the first was made. Our times are in his hand who saith, ‘A whole I planned, youth shows but half; Trust God: See all, nor be afraid!”
― Robert Browning

I thought I’d be serene, wise, motherly, able to handle anything that comes along by this age. I must think again.

I never stop changing; I am always learning, and should always be ready to embrace a new challenge each day. For certain, like ocean waves that wax and wane, the challenges will keep coming, no matter my age. We must be like trees, ready to bend but not break, and to dig in and become stronger, come sun or rain.

Sometimes I have to tell my inner child to stop whining and make me act my age. Although, at this age, now I don’t want to act my age!