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My Take on Getting Older

Susan Knox

The longer I live the more beautiful life becomes.

–Frank Lloyd Wright


You feel young, you look good, you move with energy, but, for some reason, when you step onto a crowded city bus, seated passengers pop up and offer their seats. You wonder how they know you’re in your late seventies.

Your body changes. One morning, you discover you have back fat. When did that happen? Overnight, you gain four inches around your waist. You don’t know this body.

You quit shopping for clothes in retail stores. It’s exhausting and depressing. You start buying online even though you return more than you keep.

You develop maladies. A knuckle on your ring finger swells, your knees stiffen in the winter, your skin is dry, your mouth is dry, your vagina’s dry. You have leg cramps at night, your shoulder is tight, you need cataract surgery and an eyelid lift, according to your optometrist. You resist the lift and have the cataracts removed. Your view brightens.

You’ve never been happier. You don’t know why.

You continue writing, taking classes, and joining writing groups. And you read, read, read now that you have the time. These activities invigorate you. You notice that sometimes when you take a break, you sleep, sleep, sleep. There’s a lesson here.

You continue to see a psychotherapist. You’re curious about how much more you can grow and understand yourself before you die.

Your marriage of over forty years is happier and stronger than ever. You and your partner have learned to respect and honor each other fully.

Life is good. You don’t fear death, but you hope it happens without warning.

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