It Started With Grumpy Old Men

It Started
With Grumpy Old Men

Original Grumpy

That really was the start of a new awareness about life and the uh mean life in the more senior population.  Notice I say life in not life about.
I’m talking about the movie, not real life grumpy old men.  Or real life grumpy old women for that
matter.   Age, or aged, depending on how
you look at it is popular right now, probably because all we baby boomers decided not to accept ‘old’ as meaning ‘old’.

When I was twenty I thought thirty was ancient and how ridiculous that seems now.  At twenty I could not imagine feeling or looking any different – ever.  A woman I know at
the age of seventy-six went zip lining a couple of weeks ago and loved it.  Now I tend to think eighty-five is old but may have a different point of view when I get there.  I tend not to glimpse in the mirror as often anymore as the reflection belies how I actually feel.

I do seem more conscious of age now and have been looking at what makes age ‘old’ because in spite of people thinking I am much younger the facts are the facts: I am a
senior citizen.

It seems to come down to energy and joy in living.  I have met some in their thirties who are much older than I, who seem beaten down, exhausted, too weary, and as though gravity itself is a weight that relentlessly prevents living.  Energy does not even
have to be physical activity but can be mental.
The fountain of youth as sought by Ponce de Leon was thought to be a fountain and the myth of magic waters actually extended back a thousand or more years.

Men and women alike seek eternal youth through plastics and injections which to me really has the opposite effect.  Nothing
like spotting implants and unmovable facial skin makes me shake my head and wonder where the common sense is and what trigger in their brain convinces them, as they stare into a mirror that they are younger or better looking.

Longevity is of interest to me (current life span in America is 78 and in Japan is 83)
but it is not the number of years of living but the quality of life in those years. Tibet’s longevity is interesting for there the goal is for a long and healthy life. One is no good without the other.
There are a few things that are consistent in everything I have read
about youthful living.

My idea of 5 Factors for Ageless Aging

1)      ENERGY of course that makes each day
an adventure whether physical or mental – actually looking forward to each day
or minute.  Moving with intention.  Showing interest in just about anything. That
is energy.

2)      A SENSE OF PEACE or acceptance – the
feeling that you are not at odds with the world on a daily basis.  It is not that you accept injustice but within you your mind and soul are at peace with yourself.  I don’t think this applies only to religious folk but each of us can find a viable truth within ourselves that makes some sense of existence. Que Sera Sera.  No point in getting your girdle in a knot, as they say about things you cannot change.

3)      SENSE OF HUMOR – this seems to be core to even wanting to live a long worthy life because if you cannot laugh at the irony of life or at yourself for that matter then why would anyone even want to exist for however long?

4)      GRATITUDE – so essential, not because you have to, not because God demands it, but because it increasesappreciation of everything large and small around us.

5)      JOY – What was the last thing you were really joyful about?  Try looking at
just about anything right now, the first object to your right and finding some
joy in it.  Just for the heck of it.  Just because.

What is your true age and how do you define it?

‘The eyes are the windows to the soul’ is an oft used phrase and is pretty accurate as
they reflect pain, sorrow, happiness, deceit, smugness, life, love..the list
could go on and on…but they also show age, for the youth, regardless of years
have a sparkle called life and when that sparkle ceases to show then regardless
of years, there is only ‘old’.

BTW sparkles can come back.  There is little
else more rewarding that bringing joy to another and seeing life.

16 thoughts on “It Started With Grumpy Old Men”

  1. A lady in my area just turned 93 and she dances and teaches yoga and loves her active life. Age is really a number. If we follow your tips and stay active, the sky is the limit… well, almost. 😉

  2. Love the five factors Chris and you are spot on. I like the comments Mark is 46 and the babelblog above is 30 – well just wait until they get to my age. 🙂

  3. How fitting that I not only watched Grumpy Old Men the other day but my 30th is coming up next month. There are some days when I wake up and feel like i’m 80 and then days when I wake up and run 20 miles. I guess a lot of it really is mental. BTW, you could probably make a book out of your five factors! Just a thought.

  4. Wonderful post Chris. I have long believed that you are only as old as your mind. My physical body might have other plans and is always reminding me that I am getting older, but my mind is stubbornly holding onto it’s status as a twenty-something goofball….. So, legally I’m 46….but in my head….I’m stuck on 21……. 🙂

  5. I’m only 24 but I’ve always felt ridiculous in saying my (lack of) age. I’ve always felt older… but not necessarily wiser. Enough maturity to sit at the “grown up table” for holidays, but enough playful energy to entertain the kids with dumb party tricks 🙂

  6. I love this post. I just passed another birthday and I try to tell myself it doesn’t matter, but it does. Your list is something I need to review daily. Old is old … no, old is ancient without the right attitude. I need an adjustment. Thank you.

  7. Love your list of 5 Chris. You are always a bright spot in my day when I read your thoughts, so first Thank You for giving this young woman a different view on life. I hit 40 just a few months ago and I have looked at myself in the mirror, just the face mind you don’t really have the nerve to see what the damage is on the rest of me. I don’t know what 40 is supposed to look like and I am not one to be concerned with how I look. I go by how I feel. If I break it down it would go like this for me. Brain acts 19 but with more life experience, overall body not sure where it falls guessing somewhere in the early to mid 30’s minus the mack truck hit of having 7 kids. The boobs are in their own bracket, they have to be because they are somewhere around 80. Truly is funny how you wonder “what will be the first to go my brain, subtle skin” turns out it is the breasts. Guess it is a good thing my grumpy old man doesn’t mind 😉 Cheers

  8. Nice post. I am mid-way through 74. My hair is silver, I have more false teeth than real, one ear doesn’t work at all, the other functions at about 50% of normal, much of me has sagged,my brain is slip-sliding away,Sigh. I am at limes so happy to be alive and living the life I live now and having lived the life that brought me here that tears fill my eyes.

    I define anyone over the age of 65 as eligble to be called a WOO…Wise Old One. Claim to me one myself. Edibility requirements: a sense of humor, has made some peace with aging and facing death, still likes to be around children, has half an open mind, and finally, are not out to convert or judge others There are quite a few around and I have meant many blogging. I have also met a few honorary WOOs. Don’t know your age, but you are definitely a Wise One.

  9. One of the things I love about being older? Freedom. If any place, thing or person feels toxic to me, I make no excuse…I just leave. That leads to having your 5 factors alive and well in my life, Chris. 😀

  10. some times i think we are the grumpy old women but laughter and happiness all gets us through so i guess we could be the silly young ladies instead

  11. It is only just recently that I have begun to feel my age. My back aches, my legs ache, so do my feet and sometimes my hands. Yet every morning I wake up to another bright day. My first thoughts are ‘what exciting things shall we do today? What adventures shall we find? What changes can I make to the world?
    The idea is there, the spirit is willing but my body is not.. there are some things that I can still do but others that are impossible any longer…so you just have to make the best of what you have and what you can do

    Happy Sailing!

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