The other day, while I was browsing the shelves in our local library, a book title jumped out at me: Why Time Goes Faster as We Get Older.
I want to slow time down, grab hold of it and hold on tight. I want to savour each moment. I don’t want to get any older.
I remember when I first realised I was ageing. One day I looked in the mirror and I saw them: the first tell-tale lines around my eyes. How had they snuck past me? I felt a little ashamed. How could I have let myself slip into a visible old age? I should have done something. But what? By the time we notice we’re ageing, it’s too late.
Sometimes I wonder how I can go out in public with all these lines and wrinkles. What will people say? I suppose they could say, “Hey, Sue, you’re looking old!” (But would they?) Is getting old really something to be ashamed of?
After I’d borrowed my library books, I had one more job to do while I was in town: I needed to renew my driver’s license. While I was filling out the renewal form, I noticed something interesting: There is now such a thing as a ten year license, as well as the usual one and five year ones. I was thinking how good it would be to have one of these longer licenses when I noticed something else: I’m too old to apply for one. And I’m not just slightly too old. I’m 10 years too old.
As I waited in the queue with my form, my mind was busy doing some rather alarming maths: How many more five year licenses can I apply for? How long have I got before I have to have an annual checkup and driving test, to make sure I’m not too feeble to be in charge of a car? Oh my! I reckon the way time is marching on, that day will arrive very soon, like maybe in a year or two.
By the time I arrived at the front of the queue, I felt like a very old woman. I hobbled up to the desk and, with a quivering hand, passed over my form saying, “I’m too old for a 10 year license.”
“So am I,” laughed the woman serving me. (She didn’t look that old.) “I do have some good news for you though,” she added. “Your license will be half price because you haven’t lost any demerit points.”
That cheered me up. I have a perfect driving record. Not bad for someone who’s racing towards extreme old age.
It was my birthday a couple of weeks or so ago. My daughter Sophie took lots of photos of my special day, and I accidently managed to get into a few of them. Later, when we were looking at them, my youngest daughter Gemma-Rose said, “You look beautiful, Mum!”
“But what about all the lines around my eyes?” I asked. “They make me look very old.”
“No, they don’t. They’re only smile lines. You smile more often than most people. That’s why you have lines.”
Just a moment ago, I was feeling ashamed because I’m looking old. Now I’m ashamed I was feeling ashamed. Perhaps I should now feel ashamed about wasting so much time writing a post on such trivial matters as my ageing appearance.
Gemma-Rose is right. I’m always smiling because I have lots to smile about. Aren’t I blessed?
I think I’ll stop right here and go do something more important (like hug a daughter), before today turns into the day after tomorrow… before any more time races away.
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