“Memory in youth is active and easily impressible; in old age it is comparatively callous to new impressions, but still retains vividly those of earlier years.” Charlotte Bronte
I’ve written about aging several times. I do so because I’ve reached old age. I try to resist the fact that my body is limited when it comes to certain tasks. On the other hand there are times when I fall asleep in mid-sentence, which makes me realize there’s not much I can do about this process other than accept it and move on .
Statistics point to the fact that we’re living longer lives these days. By the year 2050 the aging population of the world will have doubled, which means more than a billion people will still be hanging on to life. Millennials will be footing the bill for Social Security. Many of them will be supporting their parents in their old age. The truth is, most people passing the age of sixty are still very vital people, with tons of knowledge and wisdom. We may no longer have the stamina we did at 21. Our thinking process is a little slower and so is our ability to move.
Add to that the COVID19 experience and anyone over 50 is at risk of death sooner than expected. Prior to this pandemic, reaching 50 was nothing. Sure there will be a mid-life crisis, but that passes and life goes on. It seems when we’re placed in a certain class, we’re considered vulnerable. I believe we’re vulnerable at any age. It really depends on how we look at things.
There are lots of ways the elderly can alter their bodies and faces – if they have a fortune to waste. Plastic surgery and cold body sculpting are at an all time high – and it’s not just the women who are making that investment. We’re being rebuilt piece by piece with replacement parts. Health care has extended the average life span remarkably. Health clubs offer special deals to keep senior citizens active. There are many community programs to keep the mind and body active.
I’m one of those living entirely on social security. Occasionally I will do some freelancing, or sell some of my writing, but basically our fixed income is simply that which we put into what was supposed to be a trust fund for people my age. Even that is being depleted by people who are going beyond what the average life expectancy was way back when Social Security was instituted.
So in the next few posts, I’m going to be addressing various options for people as they go through this inevitable aging process. These posts are meant to keep us thinking about our final years and how we will use them. We can fall into a trap of complacency. We can give up, because our minds and bodies just don’t respond the way they used to. We can hide in a bubble of our own making – hoping that eternity comes soon. We can dwell on our problems or we can make a positive impact on the world around us with our experience and wisdom.
My journey growing old has given me some new insight on what I used to think about the process. Just like any stage of life, it’s another step closer to heaven. If I had known what aging involved when I was young, I never would’ve been so eager to grow up. Growing old today has so much to offer. We just need to look at the positive side of it and trust that God has a reason for us to still be on this planet. There is work yet to be done and He will stay with us if we trust in Him.