Saturday, November 21, 2009

Old? Who me? Of course

"The advantage of being eighty years old is that one has had many people to love" Jean Renoir

Hey, everyone, I just had another birthday! I am 85 years old or at least working on it. How can that be, you ask. You were just 83 the last time we looked. This is my way of looking at it.

Years ago, I read somewhere that the Chinese way of looking at age is that when you are born you are not counted to be one year old until you have completed that year. Therefore your birthday is always behind by one year. You follow? So when you get to your birthday, you have been working on that year all the time before and therefore you have finished that year and are starting a new one. So this next year I shall tell everyone I am 85 and then when my birthday comes again I won’t feel so bad because I have been that age for a whole year already. Is that nuts? My kids think so.

There seems to be also something in my memory bank about how they also count the 9 months in the womb some way. Some of you won’t like that. You are already older than you think. Bad. Well, age isn’t such a bad thing. You cannot stop time and although I would like to go back, as does everyone I think, one cannot. So you accept it and enjoy each day you can.

There are a lot of misconceptions about old agers. One that I always debunked when I was teaching school was to tell the kids that just because someone is old does not mean they are wiser. If they were stupid when they were young, they are just as stupid when they get old. Harsh? Perhaps, but wisdom does not come automatically with experience and long life.

This post came out of the blue. I did think of a topic yesterday as my son and I were driving home from Appleton after a brief shopping trip. But I forgot what it was and he can’t remember it either, so there you go. It probably will come back to me sometime. So for now, this is it.


June said...

So you accept it and enjoy each day you can.
That acceptance is pure wisdom in and of itself.

I am so glad you're here, Bernie. I miss my eighty-five-year-old neighbor of times past...who, by now would be, what? one-hundred-thirteen! I miss our talks over the fence and her keeping going albeit more slowly than she would have liked.

It seems to me one can choose to call oneself any age one wants to. So you go ahead and be eighty-five now if you want to. Or tomorrow if when you wake up you feel like saying you're thirty-five, go ahead and do that too. Your kids'll really take issue with that! :-P

Wander to the Wayside said...

I never really understood why people get so upset about birthdays and getting older. Yes, birthdays mark the passing of time, and time eventually runs out, but I've always been so grateful to have reached another birthday, considering the alternative!

Happy birthday, to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Bernie, happy birthday to you. And many moooooore!

GooseBreeder said...

A very happy Birthday to you Bernie...however old you are!Agree with every word as usual.

Susan R. Mills said...

Happy Birthday! I hope you had a fantastic day.

Wanda said...

A Very Happy Birthday Bernie

...My best friend's birthday is tomorrow and my Mother would have been 84 on the 24th...

Gail said...

I love your statement that wisdom does not come with age.

You, however, are a very wise woman.

Bernie said...

Happy Birthday my friend, and you do look wonderful....may you enjoy many more birthdays with your family......:-) Hugs

Deb Shucka said...

Happy Birthday, whatever year you're counting. I love the picture and will count myself lucky if I look and sound anything like you when I hit my eighties.

C.L. (Cindy) Beck, author said...

Happy birthday! (Just a little late.:)

KaLynn said...

I love your way of thinkin'! You make me laugh!

Oz Girl said...

A belated Happy Birthday to you Bernie! And yes, one of my mother's friends always said that about age - that you had just completed a year and so in reality, you were working on the next age.

I hope you had a wonderful 84th birthday! ;-)


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