Life happens

Mom and Lydia setting up the tent 1980 001

The day I discovered why you check the weather and make sure your tent doesn’t have holes in it BEFORE you go camping.


I was reading a blog  by oneanna65 who recently turned 67.  She mirrors my thoughts about the number of years we spend on Earth,   “Happy 67-th Birthday to me! But only today. Because tomorrow I’m going to be younger!”

I don’t feel as if I’m in my 6th decade of life, either, and didn’t get a feel for exactly how many years that was until I had to use one of those ^&*% energizer bunny scrollbars to record my age on a survey.

At some point in your life you’ll look back at the melted watercolor sunsets, your children’s love, and those vacations from hell and wonder why it passed by so quickly.   The more years you have to look back on it, the more you’ll appreciate the sunsets or laugh at the antics of young campers who knew nothing about checking their gear–or the weather report–before the inside of their tent became a kiddie pool.   Life, it seems, is going on around us all the time.  We’re just too busy asking the air, “am I there yet?”

If I was asked if I wanted to live the same life over again, I would decline.  After all, isn’t the definition of insanity to do things the same way over and over again and expect a different result?  

If I was offered immortality, I would laugh and then ask, “Do you think I’m crazy?”  If there’s a heaven, great.  If there’s nothing, I won’t know it.  If there’s a recycling program called reincarnation, there’s nothing much I can do except try to be a better ‘whatever’ in the next life. 

While I’m waiting to find out where the journey of death will lead me, I can ignore the 15 year old who sneers and says, “All old people look alike” (He’ll say that to anyone over 30).   I’ll find humor in the 30 year old who asks (as I sniff a rose), “Are all old people crazy?”   I’ll simply use it in one of my books and know that in 30 more years he’ll remember what he said and regret it.

I can smile at the naive young couple who swear their new child will make their marriage better, remembering how it took a strong marriage to weather the sleepless nights, illnesses, kicks in the shin, the screaming “I want!”  and a rebellious teenager yelling, “I hate you!”  

It takes an even stronger marriage to weather the empty nest as your beloved children leave home to find their own way in life.   When s/he goes on to have a life without you, and you become a speck in his/her peripheral vision, it’s not a slight.  It’s time to go forward, to find a new purpose and, when necessary, to remind your children that you’re not a toy to throw into a box.  You still have hopes, dreams, goals, and feelings just as you did when you left home.

My choice is not to wait around for other people to entertain me.  I write.  It’s the world’s best therapy and it costs nothing but the price of paper, electricity and a computer. Since I would be paying for those anyway, it brings to mind an old cliche my mother used to say, “The best things in life are free.”

I suppose it all depends upon how you look at it.   Life happens.  When I can understand–with certainty–how to control whether it happens TO me or WITH me, I’ll let you know.