Sunday, November 20, 2011

At my age the future is tomorrow

Looking ahead is really something for the young. I try to project, to see where I will be when I get older, but actually, I’m already there. Except that I will get older again tomorrow and the next day and so on. The only difference is that there are fewer tomorrows.

So what? Well, for one thing, it’s time to recognize that, to make sure that tomorrow not only comes (as far as one is able), but that I’m there to greet it. I like to say that I’m still trying to figure out what I’m going to be when I grow up, but the truth is, I grew up a long time ago. Maybe when I was in my twenties, maybe earlier, probably not much later. I took on grown-up responsibilities, undertook adult tasks, even prepared for the future. But all the time I kept thinking, "I’m acting just like a grown up!" I just don’t think I believed it. I probably still don’t.

I know that once I completed my "three score and ten" I was supposed to be an old man, but somehow that hasn’t stuck, at least in my own mind. I can’t speak for others. I have plans, and projects and ideas I want to get on with "when I have time." Well, when is that time going to begin?

I’m not really aware of my age most of the time. A doctor friend of mine (some 25 years my junior), said something recently about my approaching 80 (still a few years away), and changes I should anticipate. I laughed. Later I felt a bit of resentment because he had, with all good intentions, reminded me of something I don’t really want to contemplate. When I have trouble moving about for a few seconds after I get up from my desk, or getting out of the truck after I've loaded it with firewood, or some other sedentary activity, I blame it on the weather, or sitting still too long. That’s enough of thinking about how I feel for the time being. I don’t blame it on the calendar, but maybe I should. Maybe I should say, "No, I don’t want to do that. I’m not young anymore, you know." But somehow I don’t believe that. I don’t believe that years add limitations. They just speed up the clock, shorten the day, allow less time for thinking about what I haven’t yet done.

At my age the future is tomorrow.

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