Life is an exciting journey that takes us into many places, situations and experiences that by the time a young person today reaches about 25 he or she have gone through the whole spectrum of human experience by probably half of what he or she needed to know.
It also teaches us valuable lessons that we can stack up with our education, upbringing, assumptions and expectations. Some are careless, some are calculative but in reality a lot of us are decisive, determined and ready to work to achieve our dreams.
Along the way we gather the tools necessary for that life’s journey; and with the expectations that we are indeed “equipped” we spread our wings and fly! Such could be the feeling of new graduates: hopeful and positive at the world that waits for them as soon as they stepped into that toga and cross the stage amidst the adulation and cheers of their fellow graduates.
Then the “real life challenge” kicks in. The expectations are not met; goals are not reached and the unexpected keeps popping up in every turn. In the end only those that are determined to “win the race” actually makes it. All of this feeling and experiences all started with a “life imagined” and we get through all stages until we reach maturity. That signal is when retirement comes, or the “handicap tag” finally arrived in the mail. You finally accepted and convinced yourself “it’s cool” to join AARP. After all, most of your friends are members and you can’t help it because they seem happier than you!
So the “life imagined” presents itself right in front of our eyes like in an HD movie. We saw our successes, we cringed at our failures and pat ourselves on the shoulders for decisions that we withhold which prevented us from experiencing the fall.
Now we finally settled in and as we share experiences with others we are more excited into what the years ahead might be for us. I really do not like the term “twilight years” because even right after retirement, there are a million things to do. There as so many places to see and there are individuals we needed to reach out into and tell them personally how much we have valued their friendships, their support and most of all to return the love they gave us.
Nothing holds us back when we start to make a step into “life reimagined”. This phase in our lives makes the “twilight years” pale into years that will be filled with more sunshine as we engaged and become proactive with the many possibilities that awaits for us, even when we are officially declared “Seniors”. Joining AARP was one cool decision I made. Also knowing that there is a dedicated group of men and women banded together to keep watch for the interests and well-being of fellow seniors is just anice kind of feeling one can have.
So enjoy the time when finally you can have ALL the time in your life: for yourself, for your family, loved ones and the joy of community as we all engaged in the many productive pursuits before we close the final chapter and cross the “great beyond.” Author Maria Casar Friedman reminds us to “make peace with your past so you don’t mess up the present!” I cannot find or link this quote to any particular author but I guess many of you will agree with me that: