Today was the last day of school in our community.
As I sat in the high school parking lot waiting to pick up my son, the final bell rang and the only way I can describe what happened next was an explosion. Suddenly, the doors blasted open and hundreds of kids burst from that building in joyful celebration.
There were high fives and fist pumps; burst of laughter and excited chatter; the sound of tires pealing as teens with cars sped out of the parking lot, leaving behind the books and tests and racing toward a summer of freedom.
Why does it just seem like yesterday that that was me?
As I drove my son home, listening to his recitation of what his last day had been like, I thought back to earlier in the week when one of my childhood friends had posted a photo of himself on Facebook.
He stood proudly beside his truck wearing a T-shirt that read: “#1 Grandpa.”
This man was one of my brother’s best friends. He had grown up one street over from us and is four years younger than I am. I had known that he had become a grandfather last year…but there was something about seeing him wearing a shirt announcing that there is now someone on this earth that calls him “Grandpa” that was jarring to me.
I am now 46 years old and I am okay with that. I have no desire to go back in time and re-live my youth, even if that were possible.
My body has slowed down. As a result of back surgery, there are things I can no longer do.
I am at peace with aging…that is part of life. I make no attempt to forestall the inevitable wrinkles (although I do admit to visiting the salon every six weeks to take care of those ever-increasing gray hairs!). To me, real beauty is not an unnaturally smooth face of a woman in her fourth decade or beyond. I see true beauty in my mother’s face. Every line tells a story of a life fully lived….that is beautiful.
Yet…even though I am 46, I actually feel like I am still 21. As silly as it sounds, it was only fairly recently that I realized that Doug and I no longer qualified as part of the “young marrieds” at church. 🙂
Am I the only one? Do you feel older or younger than your years?
“Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.”—Unknown