December 12, 2006

Don't Grow Old

A friend forwarded this beautiful piece by email. I just had to share it with you:

Don't grow old, grow up.

Many people are afraid of growing old. I'm afraid of growing old and boring. Many people are afraid of growing old, alone. I'm afraid of growing old, insane. Many people are afraid of losing their looks. I'm afraid of losing my dreams. Many people are afraid of losing their youth. I'm afraid of losing my soul.

When you're 15, 35 seems ancient. When you're 35, 15 seems juvenile. A turnaround in a split second - two decades zoom past and before you know it, it`s only a mile to the next millenium. Don't fear age - it's a right of personhood. Don't fear it, it's God's greatest jest. Don't grow old - you don't have to.

Don't date because you`re desperate. Don't marry because you're miserable. Don't have kids because you think your genes are superior. Don't separate because you think it's fashionable. Don't drink because you have troubles. Don't gamble because you think winning is inevitable. Don't philander because you think you're irrestible. Most likely, you're not. Don't associate with people you can't trust. Don't cheat. Don't lie. Don't pretend. Don't try to buy your way into the kingdom of God. Don't dictate because you're smarter. Don't demand because you're stronger. Don't sleep around because you think you're old enough and know better. Don't hurt your kids because loving them is harder. Don't sell your self, your family or your ideals.

Don't stagnate. Don't regress. Learn a new skill. Find a new friend. Start a new career. Don't live in the past. Time can't bring anything or anyone back. Don't put your life on hold for possibly Mr. Right. Don't throw you life away on absolutely Mr. Wrong because your biological clock is ticking and you can't afford to have your eggs harvested before the new millenium.

There's always a mad rush to something, somewhere but victory does not always belong to those who finish first. Sometimes, there is no race to be won only a price to be paid for some of life`s more hasty decisions. You can't always go with the throng who would be wrong. Sometimes, you have to be alone to be enlightened.

To terminate your loneliness, reach out to the homeless. To feed your nurturing instincts, care for the needy. To fulfill your parenting fantasies, get a puppy. Don't bring another life into this world for all the wrong reasons. To keep yourself warm, buy a jacket. In the long-run, it will be less complicated and less costly. To make yourself happy, pursue your passions and be the best of what you can be.

Simplify your life. Take away the clutter. Get rid of destructive elements - abusive friends, nasty habits and dangerous liaisons. Don't abandon your responsibilities but don't overdose on duty. Don't live life recklessly without thought and feeling for your family. Be true to yourself. Don`t commit when you're not ready. Don`t keep others waiting needlessly. Fall in love - it`s the greatest thing on earth. But take care and remember, after the fall must come the rise.

Go on that trip. Don't postpone it. Say those words. Don't let the moment pass. Do what you must even at society`s scorn. Write poetry. Love deeply. Walk barefoot. Hold hands. Dance with wild abandon. Cry at the movies. Take care of yourself. Don't wait for someone to take care of you. You light up your life. You drive yourself to your destination. No one completes you - except you.

It is true that life doesn't get easier with age. It only gets more challenging. Don't be afraid. Don't lose your capacity to love. Pursue your passions. Live your dreams. Don't lose faith in God. Don't grow old. Just grow up.


ShadowFalcon said...

I'm not afriad of growing old, I'm scared of losing control of my life.

Probably why I'd rather die young, but if I have my health I my stick around.

Anonymous said...

Great post, Irene. It gave me a lot to think about today. Actually, I realized some but not all of those things when I hit midlife. That was my reckoning on growing old versus growing up.

Brian said...

Just be yourself, and be true to who you are.

Thanks for sharing Irene. :)

Anonymous said...

I love that. It's so true. I don't feel old, but I do feel like I have learned so much these past years.

krystyna said...

Hi Irene!
This is great! Thanks for these thoughts Irene!!
Blessings to you!

Mika said...

wow...thanx for that amazing post, it puts everything in perspective. i needed that, what with being a teenager and all. :)

Claudia said...

Irene, you've done it again...another inspiring post!! :)

bearette24 said...

I like this post, especially the part about not rushing. I rushed into law school...and I still regret it.

bearette24 said...

Not to end on a sour note...I was able to leave my law job and do other things, fortunately. But i wish i didn't have that loan to pay off :(

Anonymous said...

OMG this is beautiful! So true. Live life, don't just exist...grow up and don't grow old. Always be young at heart cos ur soul really never grows old.



Jay said...

Great post. That was basically a run-down of everything I do that I shouldn't. LOL

Tanks for visiting my blog! I love your blog. I'll definitely be back.

Maria said...

what an interesting post! it got me thinking about getting old and growing old gracefully.

irene, i did it, "threesome" is up! thanks, i had fun! ;)

terra shield said...

A lovely post... by the way, you have been tagged! :D

SQT said...

Too often we need those reminders to do the things we know we should.

houseband00 said...

Fantastic, Irene. =)

Na-touch ako.

Aaaanyway, been TAGGED!! =)

Steven Novak said...

I want to grow old though.

It seems so much nicer to simply sit around and shit my pants. ;)


Belle said...

Oh wow...what a great post...I actually printed it out and it's on my bulletin board now ;)

I love your blog! Do you mind if I add you to my links list on mine?

Dorky Dad said...

I'm not afraid of growing old. I'm afraid of growing while old. At some point I'd like to stop. Otherwise I'll be huge.

Thankfully, I've learned to live with the whole aging thing, which is good because it ain't stoppin'.

Nice blog, by the way!

Irene said...

ShadowFalcon: Your fiesty spirit assures me you'll stick around for a very, very long time. ;p

Precious Gem: Your reckoning yielded good results, my friend. Your realizations have made you such a wise, warm, caring soul enriched by your life's colorful experiences. =)

Brian: We just have to learn to handle the truth. ;p

Janet: Definitely. It is but expected that a Wonder Mom is always infectiously vibrant and energetic! :p

Krystyna: Always great to hear from you! Hope all's fine and dandy in your part of the world. =)

Mika: Glad you liked it! I just tagged you, by the way. Have fun!

Captivating Claudia: Thanks, my friend! Inspiration is always great to find. =)

Beautiful Bearette: While you rushed into law school, I rushed to enter pre-med. I knew from the first month that my heart (and guts) wasn't in it so I shifted courses and schools after a year.

I still love Grey's Anatomy though. :p

Keshi: I tagged you, lovely! =)

Jay: Thanks for the visit. Your comment made me laugh! =) I'll look forward to seeing you soon!

Maria: But you're still sooo young! Nakakainis! ;p

SQT: How are you? Hope you're doing well. =)

Handsome Houseband: Tapos na po ang tag. Masaya ka na ba? ;p

Steve: Bwahahaha! It is my dream to be as funny as you.

Belle: I linked you up already. Woohoo! =)

Dorky Dad: That was a hugely amusing comment! =) Thanks for visiting. I'll see you again soon! ;p

Tisha said...

Awesome post! :)

Thanks for stopping by my blog.
Hope to see you again soon.

Irene said...

Thanks, Tisha! Oh, I'll definitely see you again soon. =)

Margo said...

This is a great one!

Irene said...

Thanks, Margo! Enjoy your weekend! =)

Stewart Sternberg said...

I once read in a book, and I am not sure which, probably "Interview With The Vampire", about immortality. The character bemoaned the curse of it. The idea that as you walk through life, you can't hold onto the present, that things change, that it is the nature of life. The pain of seeing things change, totally, of knowing that you are no longer part of the past and the present, that you have no real place in the future.

I was at a meeting the other day, and looked around, startled. I realized I was the oldest person there, and the only one with white hair.


Let me grow old, but let my mind stay clear and my imagination still vibrate.

Michael C said...

Beautiful Post! I turn 33 this coming Sunday and after two open heart surgeries am just glad to be alive! I should admit that I'm also glad for beef jerky.

Seriously, a wonderful post!!!!!!

Irene said...

Stewart: I loved the book "Interview with a Vampire." I, too, believe that immortality is overrated. I wouldn't want to just go on and on and on with no beginning and no end. I want to experience the complete cycle of life. =)

Oh and I think white hair can be quite attractive on men! ;p

Hope to see more of you!

Michael: Hope you had a wonderful birthday! I'm glad you're alive, too! You know you're one of my all-time favorite bloggerfriends. c",)

Wishing you a looong life ahead and countless more beef jerkies! ;p

MotoRama said...

I had to read it twice to get the full import as there were so many lines that was profound! Thanks for sharing.

Tom Atkins said...

A beautiful and moving bit of writing! And so true. Thank you for this.


Irene said...

Motorama: Glad you savored and took delight in its profundity. =)

Poet Tom: Welcome back. Hope you're feeling better, my friend!

Dan said...

I agree with everything in this post!

I would go one step further, however, and say don't grow old and don't grow up.

I want to be a kid always.

(I have seen you commenting on many blogs and wanted to stop in and say 'hello'. Hope that was OK.)

Irene said...

Dan, thanks for visiting. Kids and kids-at-heart are always welcome here! =) Hope to see you again!

Dan said...

Irene, and thanks so much for the very kind words you left on my blog regarding my dad. Love, Dan.