My bones hurt. There are evil gremlins that take delight in stabbing my joints with sharp knives. I have a hard time getting up off the floor at the gym, my thigh muscles refusing to act like the 20 year old that lives in my head.
But notice that I’m AT the gym. We must take our triumphs where we can, right? I may not be able to do as much as I used to, but I still pull on those silly stretch pants and a T-shirt to pick up weights and move ‘them around a couple of times a week. It’s all good for my body, and this is no surprise, it’s great for my head, too.
I’m still finding threads of conversation to write about, too, and kids to read with at a table somewhere. My calendar now has blocks of time marked out for “REST and READ,” though, which I believe more of us should do no matter our age.
As I have marched along my personal timeline of age, not much jumps out and surprises me anymore, though. That can be a good thing on most days; our hearts probably can’t take it. But once in a while, I am caught off guard.
Like two days ago when I had a few minutes before my next tutoring student showed up at the public library where I meet him after school. I was sketching out a new “members only” page on my web site (see; I can’t help myself!) and I ended up leaving my phone on the chair when I moved to the study room. I later left the library and got as far as the gas station at the corner, when I realized my phone was AWOL.
It’s amazing to me how these devious devices have become so essential to us, almost like they are glued to our bodies as an extra limb. I returned to the library, realizing that nearly 2 hours had gone by. What are the chances, I thought, that the phone would still be within 5 miles by now?
The librarian pulled it out from under the counter and pointed to a teenager across the room.
“That young man over there turned it in. He said he knew someone would be looking for it.” Our eyes met in shock. From a distance, all I could see was a teenager with the ever-present backpack, a ball cap turned backwards on his head, dressed in jeans and T-shirt. A TEENAGER, I groaned, images of my previous life trying to corral a room full of 13 year olds long enough to teach them American History or………anything. But I felt I should speak to him in person, so I crossed the room and approached him.
As I thank him for his honesty and helpfulness, he turned to me and a smile lit his face, braces glinting in the light from the window. None of the thoughts I had had tumbling around in my head about TEENAGERS applied to this young man, a person of integrity who did the right thing when it would have been easier to ignore a situation. I wanted to hug him.
Yes, I can still be surprised. And that in itself can help keep us young,creaking joints and all.
Age is inevitable. Aging isn't