Am I getting old? No, really! Am I reaching old age? It was only yesterday when I performed in a ballet as Snow White with those shiny pink toe shoes ribboned up, eating away at my feet while taking many steps and twirls slipping me into an imaginary world of delight. I was 12!
My hair continues to get thinner as I attempt to wrap skinny thread-like strands around the barrel of a curling iron each day. Creases all over the face are voluminous as I take time to look into the mirror holding a jar of wrinkle remover. The once loved tiny freckles are now called age spots. I cake on newly purchased Clinique #9 Sand-colored make-up. This daily routine is more than a habit. It’s a job!
During decades of teaching, I recall when that make-up came in handy appearing in front of the students and parents. Attempting to involve sixth graders into the world of diagramming sentences, making sure a subject and verb was a daily happening. Producing polished papers occurred weekly. Over a period of thirty years, I had a ball spending twelve-hour days planning, creating, trying to make Ancient Rome come alive with Roman dress and tasting grapes while teaching about life during those times.
I’ve dropped out of volunteering at the Chamber of Commerce and have dismissed myself from the Camden Kitchen Tour responsibilities. Bridge playing has been replaced by MahJongg.
My mind is happily flooded with memories of sailing adventures, the excitement of fly-fishing, screaming happily as the golf ball entered the hole. Traveling while learning about the happenings of life in visited areas all flood my mind. Treasured reflections extensively travel swiftly, swiftly speed by as recalled details are brought back to life through photographs, letters and journals of passing times.
Today the majority of my time is spent finding misplaced car keys or remembering to check the calendar for previously set up dates. I often discover I’ve written that same grocery list on three different scraps of paper found throughout the house. How quickly these behaviors take over, replacing “sharp-as-a-tack” routines.
In her 90’s my mother, told me, “Enjoy the daily adventures. Observe slowly as those memories become a diary of life’s happenings”. Such wise words I try to live by each day.
I love taking trips through remembered experiences.
Cherished matters I thought were so desperately important no longer exist, as a spotlessly clean house gives way to reading a good book and the sailboat has been sold providing time to producing a well-written story.
As I grow older the days change into a quiet, less hectic, peacefulness. I love each stage of life I have experienced, including this one. I am encountering a slowing down reality and need to treasure this piece of my life.
I no longer fit into that size 10 dress, flirting with that good-looking guy who just took my order. I have changed. I am getting older, embracing each day as my mind jumps from previous adventures while treasuring the joy of memories.