‘Happy birthday!’ I said to one of the ladies I cared for when I was a private caregiver.
‘What’s so happy about it?’ Ms. Elaine countered. ‘I’m an old lady, getting older.’
I answered quickly (maybe too quickly) with my positive spin.
‘But aren’t you glad you’ve lived such a long life?’
At the time, I couldn’t empathize with Ms. Elaine’s sentiments. I was a mere spring chicken in my 40s. Now, years later, I understand.
My mirror, in its not-so-subtle way, reveals that another birthday is fast approaching. I’m sure it means well every time it nags me about applying increasing amounts of anti-wrinkle creams and making another appointment to cover my graying roots.
If I allowed myself, I could easily dread another birthday. Not only because of the physical part, but also because of the dreams I fear may no longer be possible.
Do you ever feel this way?
Remember when you were a child? How excited you felt about every birthday? You couldn’t wait to celebrate your special day with family and friends.
What if we returned to that same celebratory attitude – no matter how many candles we have on our birthday cake?
‘Yeah, sure, Sheryl,’ you say. ‘Wait until you’re looking at 90 candles.’
Yet what would your friend who’s dying of cancer say about another birthday? I’m sure he or she would gladly celebrate getting older, and older – and older.
I’m not trying to force a Pollyanna attitude. (Believe me, I’m also writing this column for myself.) Perhaps Psalm 25:1 (AMPC) can help us with our perspective: ‘Unto You, O Lord, do I bring my life.’
When we pause to remember who we’re living for – who gives us our life – we’re able to look at ourselves (and every day God gives us) differently.
When I remember to bring my life to the Lord, I live that day differently. Each time I pray for His direction on how to use the time He gives me, I’m able to look forward to each day.
I can rest in knowing He has a purpose for me which continues … and continues! Rather than mourning lost youthfulness, let’s rejoice in each day as we wait in expectation for what God has planned for us.
If you think about it, no matter how old we are, we’re going to live forever in eternity. So, we’re actually … merely spring chickens.
Sheryl H. Boldt is the author of the blog, www.TodayCanBeDifferent.net. Connect with her at SherylHBoldt@gmail.com.