By Dr. Rich Bimler, Lutheran Life Communities –
“Aging is the only way to Live!” What a great statement of hope and joy in living. Just think: The one thing we all are doing together, every day, is aging. So, what do we do about it?
We can either continue to complain about all of our worries, woes, and wrinkles or we can accept these realities and move on with aging gracefully. I choose the second option! What about you?
Life is given to us as a gift, and the gift of aging is something to celebrate each day. All too often our culture convinces us that aging is a burden. I strongly encourage each of us to see aging instead as a blessing! No need to go around with an attitude of “Been there, done that”. Instead, we can see our gifts, experiences and wisdom as opportunities to share these blessings with others.
We older adults need to laugh at ourselves more also. “Lighten Up!” is a great mission statement for people our age. Even if we lose our keys, forget where we park, or get frustrated when people around us speak so softly (!), we can take these changes in stride – and yes, even laugh at our foibles and failures. Remember the story of grandma who complained to her friend that she had a traveling pain? First it was her shoulder, then her back, and then maybe her legs and neck. Her friend says, “I know what you mean. I’ve got a traveling pain also. It’s my husband!”
Check out the signs around you today that affirm that aging is the only way to live. Look for those AH-HA moments in your life, those surprises, the times when people are smiling and hugging and helping one another. No need to bemoan the fact that you and I are older today than yesterday. Instead, celebrate this day as a gift; a gift to be given away to others. There is nothing wrong with remembering the “good old days” as long as we also remember that these are the “good new days”!
May you and I embrace the gift of aging every day. May we develop an attitude that we are not “getting old”, but rather that we are “aging”. It makes all the difference in how we approach each and every day!
In a light-hearted, yet serious way, we can proclaim to each other, “Get over it, and get on with it!” “Get over it!” – We are all aging. Hooray! And then, “Get on with it!” Live life for all it is worth, starting today!
The Arlington of Naples, the new Continuing Care Retirement Center being developed in Lely Resort, understands aging. The staff and board see that aging is a blessing to be shared and not a burden to endure. I encourage you to check out their vision for aging and the exciting plans being developed in our area.
Blessings to you as you joyfully age, in the Lord. And remember, “Until further notice, celebrate everything!” because aging is the only way to live!
About the Author
Dr. Rich Bimler, Bloomingdale, Illinois, has served the Church in various positions throughout his 49 year ministry career. He repositioned in 2006 after serving for 15 years as President/CEO of Wheat Ridge Ministries. He serves as the Ambassador of Health, Hope, and Aging (AH-HA!) for Lutheran Life Communities, Arlington Heights, Illinois. He con-tinues to write, speak, and consult with other agencies and organizations throughout the world.