I'm Middle Aged ... If I Live To Be 116

I've heard it said that life is too short to be taken seriously. I agree 100% with that ... but totally disagree with it at the same time. Just depends on how you look at it.

For example, I don't want to go through all of my life and then get to the end and realize I wasted all that I had been given, that I focused on the things that don't matter to the exclusion of the things that do. On the other hands, I don't want to be so totally focused on the task at hand that I forget to smell the roses, that I neglect to just enjoy what's around me. That, my friends, is what we call a conundrum ... or life.

As I'm getting older, I'm learning more to enjoy what's around me. I still like to say I'm middle-aged, but my oldest son (who is dangerously close to middle age himself) likes to point out that I probably won't live to be 116, so therefore, I can't be termed middle-aged. Whatever. I'd like to say that my oldest son is dumb, but that would really not be nice ... so I won't.

This brings me to another point in that tiny argument about age that I have with my son. The British  have concluded in a study that middle age begins at 55. Sounds about right. Makes me a little more forgiving about that big war that we fought for independence with them a couple of hundred years ago. But I think they're on to something.

We'll just say I'm a little older. That way no one gets hurt. A little older. Maybe a little wiser.

I can sit on the back porch with my husband at night and watch the sun set while we talk about our days, about our dreams, about our family, about our life together ... and not worry that the kitchen isn't totally cleaned or the laundry hasn't been folded yet.

My husband and I laugh about the texts that we send each other, because if we're not wearing our reading glasses, who knows what will wind up being sent. Old blurry eyes and fat fingers do not make for good texting results, but they definitely make for a lot of hilarious fun!

I can watch our grandchildren play and enjoy their creative minds and mischievous attitude ... without worrying about how dirty they're getting, or how much sugar they're consuming, or what other people might be thinking.

I can put on my make-up in the morning and know that there's only so much I can do without resorting to cosmetic surgery ... but still be semi-okay with the fact that I'm presentable, and my husband likes the way I look. Besides, my eyes don't work like they used to, and what I don't know won't hurt me, right?

I'm at the age where if I tell people I took a nap today, they don't question my productivity or my health. Of course I took a nap. That's what people my age do! I just want to apologize to my mother for fighting naps like I did as a child. You were right, Mom. Naps are incredible!

We watch sporting events, movies, go to the doctor's office, see a policeman working an accident and realize that every one of those people look like little children. They're all younger than we are -- and we just smile at each other because we know they're going to be in our shoes one day.

It's the little things that give me joy. Getting up out of a chair without making noise. Seeing the trees change color in the autumn. Being surrounded by our children and grandchildren, laughing and enjoying each other. Hiking a rough terrain without pulling any muscles. Smelling hot chocolate chip cookies right out of the oven. Getting a compliment on my super-cute shoes. Holding hands with the man I've loved so many years.

God has given me so much. I used to just focus on the big things -- like my salvation, or His incredible love for me. Those things are awesome! Mind-blowing, if you don't mind me using an old person term. I know I'll never not be thankful for those "big things" because they're what my eternal life is all about. But, I've learned to slow down, to smell the roses, to appreciate all of the little gifts that go together to make this beautiful life He's given me.

This middle-age season suits me pretty well.


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