By Dorree Lynn for The Island Connection
We wise elders who have been privileged to live with added years have learned a few life lessons along the way. Since no American population has ever lived this long, this well or in such good health, we have become the pioneers we once admired. We are the role models whose living gifts and responsibilities are to love deeply, live fully, mentor generously and share our zest.
It’s a myth to think that our current era of energetic elders is going to sit on porches in their rocking chairs with yarn balls on their lap knitting for their progeny or living their lives doing nothing but hitting golf balls. We may love our children and grandchildren. We may value quiet moments with a good book, serene saunters in the woods, travel and museums, but the truth is that more and more of us are still rockin’ – and we don’t mean in our chairs.
We have learned that though love and spirit matter, it takes a heck of a lot of time and effort to get through each day. Just think, we have to floss twice a day, eat right, exercise, remember to take our medications, keep those damn timeconsuming doctors’ appointments and stay in good mental and physical shape. Whatever grace we’ve earned has been hard won and keeping it is far from easy.
Zestful aging requires that we do our part to keep physically and mentally healthy while enthusiastically savoring spirit and knowledge. Aging well means continuing to age as one has lived his or her life, doing the best we can.
We live in a Madison Avenue mediadriven world where, for better and worse, technology often rules and fast fingers have became synonymous with communication. We also live in a youthoriented society where 15 minutes of fame, often no matter how it is achieved, is considered desirable. Violence and value are often fungible, and finding one’s own path and priorities require maturity and effort.
No matter how positive one’s outlook, no life is lived without times of sorrow. Sometimes pain such as the reality of the death of a loved one, seemingly unbearable illness, love lost, anxiety or depression can stop zest for what seems like an intolerably long time. Seems is the operative word. Life can change, does and will.
Psychotherapist, media host and author Dr. Dorree Lynn has helped thousands of people with issues such as aging, sexuality, depression, anxiety, insomnia, loneliness, couples and family discord, divorce, dating, illness, caregiving and finding your purpose. To learn more, visit drdorree.com.