On the cusp of old age, I thought I ought to ponder what took me 80 years to get to this day. I have scars and metal bones to show for the journey, but they aren’t nearly as important as all the blessings. I had a marvelous childhood with two parents and my older brother who is still in good health. We went to church every Sunday, grounding us in an eternal view of life. Husband John died only three days before our 58th anniversary, and what a fantastic life we led! This Southern country-town girl lived with him in Queens, on Long Island, and in England before moving to the mountains. Our children, three rich blessings, call me frequently from New Jersey, Washington State, and Denmark. Beloved grandsons are in the same state, one living with me and one three hours away. I look back now and can see God’s hand was guiding me all the way.
I don’t know why old age begins at 80 for me. Maybe it’s because none of my parents or grandparents made it to 90. John’s mother made it past that number. An interchange between her and John has become part of our family lore. John was in the habit of joking by saying, “Old age is a terrible thing.”
Mom heard him say it and challenged him. John replied, “If you’re not old at 90+, what are you?”
She replied immediately, “I’m in advanced middle age.”
Brilliant! We have laughed at it for years, while admiring her indomitable spirit.
I was trained to teach music in school. Practice teaching taught me that I’d rather be in a room full of spiders than to be in charge of a group of students. Although we have fantastic teachers in John’s family, teaching genes were not in my makeup. My calling came a few years later when our church needed an organist and choir director. That lasted 25 years, and I retired with no regrets. Concurrently, I was the secretary for an accounting firm. It was satisfying to be part of a team delivering the best service we could to our clients, mostly not-for-profit organizations.
I avoided music, so God sent me in a different direction. Writing became a passion. I found I’d rather write than eat or sleep. I can no longer see music to play it, but computer screens allow me to read and write. What blessings God sent me!
I have no idea whether I have days or years left to live, but I long to be a blessing to the wonderful people in my life. If you have the same leanings, praise the Lord with me, wherever you are. Eternity beckons!