From where I sit on the sofa, there is a small chink in the curtains at one dining room window. And the angle is such that I can sense the rapid movement of cars on the street beyond my neighbor’s yard and sidewalk. Without even looking up I feel (see?) flashes of movement. It reminds me of how we can look back over our life experiences and they too can have a rapidity of movement. Is it so long ago that I sat on the porch step, pregnant, looking at the mountains, clouds, birds, the garden, the children? Taking deep breaths and thinking; I’ll always remember these moments. Why yes, that time was ages ago, waiting for my 4th child.  Born in 1983, she is now 30 years old.

“By the time you’re eighty years old you’ve learned everything. You only have to remember it.”  -George Burns

Yesterday I watched a musical performance by a favorite group. I want to share the Young@Heart chorus with you. Tears ran down my face as the members sang with elementary school students. The chorus is composed of retired women and men who live in New Hampshire.  At this point they’ve produced several CD’s, have toured Japan and the Netherlands and of course across the U.S., and performed with some music stars. The leader takes rock music hits and with this group transforms them into musical magic. I love watching them, and admit to singing along. And usually crying too. Sometimes hope can be justified by an action of others. And such is the case here- at least for me.

“The secret to staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age.”  -Lucille Ball

“Just remember, once you’re over the hill you begin to pick up speed.”  -Charles Schultz

So I’ve been thinking about “forever young” since yesterday. When I was in my 30’s a woman I knew and worked with, probably about 55 to 60 years old and quite out of shape, let’s say, showed me her wedding pictures. There was a beautiful young woman, svelte, wearing the latest 1950’s fashionable wedding gown, in a size 4 or 6. Looking pensively at the photo she remarked to me; inside I still feel like that young woman.

“The great thing about getting older is that  you don’t lose all the other ages you’ve been.”  -Madeline L’Engle

What’s most important to me is experiencing life. Enjoying nature. Spending time with people I can laugh with, reminisce with, or argue, converse and engage. Trying new things, whether a new recipe, a new vacation spot, a new idea. And along the way; getting enough sleep, having chocolate in the house, meeting new people and dear friends, and a large amount of knitting “wool” available for my use. Oh and a  large stack of books to read. I’m sure I’ll think of other things I should have included here, but that’s not my point. Life is a grand journey and I think allowing ourselves to experience and enjoy our lives, is the “forever young” part that we all want to grasp.

“Inside every older person is a younger person wondering what happened.”  -Jennifer Yane

Friday, 9 July 2010: Countdown to the 3 day show in Chicago area- 6 days to go- gulp!
Isn’t an AHA! moment amazing? I love them. My first thought was this; I’d better write this down, because with the stress and memory difficulties I’ve been experiencing, I will not remember, and I want to do so. What occurred? It’s about finding something however small even pitifully small – that you recognize in another person, because you can relate it to a thought, experience, or story of your own. My grandson’s other grandmother wants to spend time with him and can’t say the right words, or make the right plan to encourage my daughter to allow her 4 year old to go away for a week with his grandparents. For a brief time my heart went out to her because for all her misguided ways she loves that little boy.
Talking about being in a Catch-22 situation, I had another moment of blinding insight this week, about the library versus the disabled 27 year old with Down syndrome. (I think there’s a book/article/song title in there.)
When you set someone up for failure, pretty much you’ll get what you’ve worked toward and anticipated with some sort of gleefulness. How sad – in this case, a bunch of adults with what we call “typical” intelligence, trying to throw out a leg to trip up a 27 year old young man with a life long disability, half their intelligence yet a spirit to try and keep trying to overcome a barrier. The catch? No matter how hard my son works to comport himself as a model library patron, he will fail because THEY control the game. Despite that small glitch, who would you vote for here? You know my answer.
Photos-Two journals just finished despite sewing machine difficulties. Great colors.