Que Sera, Sera, Whatever will be, will be. The future not ours to see, Que Sera, Sera by Jay Livingston and Doris Day has been a song that has been such an encouragement to me.
I know the baby boomers and the greater generation loved the late legendary entertainer Doris Day. As Baby Boomers enter their elderly years, this song is good in applying that we should not worry about the future, but we should be prepared. We should not fear aging!
A celebration of aging is such a full, rich blessing. This baby boomer is so very thankful to serve and live among friends in my community who display happiness, joy and contentment in their elderly years. I have received so much mentoring from my elderly friends in the community, my church, my family and in my experiences.
I’d like to share some truths that I have learned. I hope these insights will encourage readers.
Why does our culture look at aging as a loss of control? As we truly look at the reality of life, we are never in control. From our very first breath as a newborn coming into the world, God is in control of every breath we take and our path forward in life. Our creator promises us in Isaiah 46:4-Even to your old age and gray hairs I am HE, I am HE who will sustain you. From this big truth of what life is, I would like to deduct some tips I have learned from others on celebrating aging.
- Henry Ford’s quote is one for us to apply. “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.” My late 97-year-old mother use to remind on a daily basis, “Beth, age is just a number.” How we think and feel along this journey of aging is all that truly matters. Adopt a grateful attitude for everything you have and also be grateful for everything you don’t have.
Some of the most positive elderly people I am around are those who have lost some of their vision, hearing, and ability to walk. They have learned to cope by talking to others, attending support groups, encouraging others, and not being afraid to ask for help. “People who need people are the luckiest people in the world.”
As we age, it is very normal for our driving abilities to change. This is a conversation that my elderly friends have with me quite often. Even if you find you have to reduce your driving radius or give up driving altogether, this truly doesn’t mean that you have lost or ended your independence. My elderly friends who seek alternative methods of transportation through facilities’ supported transportation programs, community transportation programs or depending now on families and friends, express they welcome the change of pace in their lives as well as the health and social benefits.
- “Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” This is a quote from Mark Twain. Stay active, keep learning, growing and find a purpose for life. I love the old saying, “A body in motion stays in motion.” On a daily basis I see the greater generation bicycling, walking, swimming, exercising, etc. As we age, we can engage in a bucket list of games, music, art, hobbies, learning new technologies, writing, etc. Continuing to focus on a purpose such as being involved in community outreach to people in need, supporting a program whether it be political, humanitarian, mission outreach, etc. It keeps us energized, focused and reminds us that we matter no matter what our age is.
- Keep being social by joining people and being involved in community activities. Enjoy life by laughing and having a good time. Smiling and laughter are contagious! As Jules Renard reminds us “It is not how old you are, but how you are old.” Truly enjoy the journey of aging!