Saturday, October 20, 2007

The Speed of Life

I'm a Baby Boomer. I was born in 1953 and I’ll be double nickels in January 2008. Most of the time I know how old I am. But I was surprised when I heard on the news the other day that on October 15, 2007 the first of the Baby Boomers, born in 1946, were eligible to apply for Social Security retirement benefits. Wow! How did that happen? That same day I looked at my calendar and discovered that by the end of October, I will have fished 101 days and 21 lakes in Northern Ontario this year. Wow! How did that happen? I'm feeling a theme here.
In 2008 I will be sneaking out the back door and messing about even more. I don't feel old. But I do feel like I've lived really, really deeply. It feels good. It feels strong. It feels powerful. The older I get the younger I become.
Last weekend I was walking through the streets of Leland, Michigan and saw a store window full of brightly colored socks. No two socks were alike. And the sign said “Life is too short to wear matching socks.” It tickled me.
So I did a quick Google search and found a few more. Life is too short...
...to drink cheap beer.
...to stuff a mushroom.
...to be little.
...for traffic.
...for reading inferior books.
So I thought it would be fun to create my own. And it was easy! Life is too short...
...to mow the lawn.
...to complain.
...to be angry.
...to have regrets.
...to drive around looking for the best gas prices.
...to ignore great weather.
...to pass up a new lake.
...to miss a starry sky.
...to postpone walking the dogs.
...to pass up a slice of hot, homemade bread with butter!!
Your turn! What are you going to stop doing and/or do more of? Send your "Life is to short" comments to me. I'll share.
"Spend the afternoon. You can't take it with you." ~~Annie Dillard
"How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives." ~~Annie Dillard
"You only live once; but if you live it right, once is enough." ~~Adam Marshall

Monday, October 08, 2007

Finding Mom

My mother has dementia. When it first started, I was concerned. Then I was sad. Today I’m experiencing something different. I can’t say I’m delighted or even at peace with her dementia. But I have found a small gift in her condition. I’m finding more of my mother each day as she chooses to share more with me, often because she thinks I am a sister rather than her daughter. Well, we do both have graying hair.

Mom is talking about things in her life she’s never shared before. She’s sharing those things that she has been holding close, some for her lifetime of 88 years.

We all have our secrets we think we’ll take to our graves. But dementia has allowed my Mom to share those things with me. Sometimes she knows she’s sharing a secret for the first time. Most often, the secret comes out in bits and pieces and I have to read between the lines. But over time, I learn more and more as the truth, or rather “her truth,” unfolds.

Monday, October 01, 2007