Getting Old

January 5, 2014

There comes a time in the life of most people who are going through the process of getting old that we find we can’t do the things we did when we were young. We can either fight it and go into denial or we can adapt to the changes.

It’s a slow process that just creeps up on you. Unless you have been ill with a disease unrelated to the aging process, you hardly feel it as it’s happening. It’s not as if one day you’re climbing Mt. Everest and the next day you’re panting to catch your breath just from bending over to tie your shoelaces.

As of now, no one has yet discovered the Fountain of Youth, although many explorers have tried. Scientists have been having some success in extending the lifespan of people and there are a myriad of beauty products out there to make one appear almost ageless.

Nonetheless, old age is a fact of life. The thought of living long enough to get old is reassuring to most people, but the reality of being old can be depressing to those who can’t accept the limitations associated with it.

There are no easy solutions but the one that seems the most workable and realistic is the one where we don’t deny what’s going on in our bodies but we try to adapt to these changes.

If tying our shoelaces leaves us out of breath, we have the option of buying shoes with velcro ties. They might not look all that stylish but at least we start the day without feeling winded from the exertion.

Many people bemoan the fact that they don’t have the stamina to climb Mt. Everest and have to settle for walking on their treadmill. But when was the last time they really had the stamina to climb Mt. Everest? It wasn’t just yesterday. It was happening gradually, over a period of time and we didn’t want to give in to it.

Even people who are interviewed by the news media for accomplishing remarkable things when they reach 105 years old, still walk slower and speak a little slower. They might look and act young for their age, but the catchwords here are “for their age.”

If we can age gracefully and still do the things that are truly important to us, I think that is the greatest gift we can have.

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