Aging With Intention

Gathering Steam

So.

Last month I explained that I'm "in training" for getting old. (Which I want to do with as much style and grace as I can muster, by the way.) I've been doing a lot of research over the past several months, gathering and reading articles, studies and books about aging (I am a Questioner, after all. . . ), and I'm feeling ready to dig into the topic of aging . . . with intention.

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(You might remember that I did a little "Selfie" project during 2020. Just taking random selfies of myself through what I thought was going to be a singular year in history. Ha. I'm still doing it . . . Not so "singular" a year after all, as it turns out.)

Anyway. "Officially," I'm planning to begin my deep dive into aging with intention in January (because who wants to start anything new when we're still in the midst of Hannukah . . . or deep into planning for Christmas . . . and setting our sights on a brand new year?), so I thought I'd just throw a place holder here. A little reminder to you that I'm Doing This. Next year.

And . . . because I want to get your thoughts on something.

"Aging," of course, is an all-encompassing topic with many facets. (Because stage of LIFE. . . ). I'm collecting really good information on a number of aging-related topics: health and well-being, finances, legal considerations, attitudes, feeling invisible, relationships, downsizing, retirement, maintaining brain health, social life. The list goes on and on and on. 

Which makes me wonder . . . what concerns you most about aging? What are you most interested in learning, discussing, thinking about? What would be helpful for you to know? Where are your gaps? Let me know in the comments, or shoot me an email. I want to know.

Let's get this party started!

"It's not how old you are, it's how you are old."
                --- Jules Renard


In Training

Back in the days when I used to run, I laughed and rolled my eyes whenever this conversation came up (as it did, all the time) . . . 

Random acquaintance: What are you training for?
Me: Life.

Because I was never "training" for anything! I just ran. For fitness . . .  because it was easy and convenient and I could just go out and do it. I was never running to "train" for any upcoming races or anything. Just for myself. I mean, it's fantastic if you ARE training for something special, some special athletic event or challenge. But . . . not everyone who runs runs because they have a major race goal. Sometimes people just run as a . . . fitness-for-life goal. Y'know?

Anyway, by now you're probably wondering what I'm going on about . . . when I don't even run any more. 

Well.
I've been thinking about this concept of being "in training" for a while now. Trying to get my head around what it means . . . to be training for something. Basically, it's getting your sh*t together to succeed at some point down the road. Preparing yourself for a future event. Making sure you're in the best shape you can be to tackle that future event. Being ready on every level - physically, emotionally, mentally, spiritually. Shoring yourself up for something that's grueling and tough and probably unpleasant. Voluntarily. Because you want to, because you choose to.

Which makes me realize . . .  I AM in training for something. Not running-related, for sure, but something grueling and tough and probably unpleasant.

So if anyone asks me that question now . . .  I'll have a ready answer.
What am I training for?

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Getting Old.

"Aging seems to be the only available way to live a long life."
                                        Kitty O'Neill Collins

I hear a lot of "old people" (which used to be people of my parents generation, but now includes my own friends and others in my age cohort) joke around and comment that . . . old age is not for the weak. And I laugh and shake my head because I suppose it's true. BUT. Hearing that phrase also makes me determined to put my money where my mouth is! I want to make sure I'm good and strong so I can meet "old age" from my BEST position, not my weakest. If I truly want to do what I say I want to do each year when I set my intentions  . . . live my best life for the rest of my life . . . I need to take my own aging seriously.

I need to put myself in training!

What does that mean, exactly?

Hell. I don't know. But I have some ideas. And I'm willing to do some research and dig a little bit. And I've always been good at figuring things out and putting a plan together. And I can commit myself when I decide to. I just know that it's important for me to get my head around the concept of aging MY WAY. I need to do this FOR ME. Holistically. Voluntarily. Because I choose to.

I am definitely in training now!

Watch this space for further developments.
Maybe you'll want to jump on board and "train" along with me.
Because it's never too early to begin training to be an old person.
(And what are you waiting for???)

"Today is the oldest you've ever been, and the youngest you'll ever be."
                                    Eleanor Roosevelt