Friday, January 3, 2014

The Start of 2014

Three days ago I witnessed the change to a new calendar for the 70th time, provided we assume that I could witness the change of a calendar at the age of seven months.  In five months we will celebrate the start of another decade and our 45th wedding anniversary which is literally on the first day of summer.  It's not that these numbers or dates have any more significance than any other year or any other date, but it just feels like a good time to share and celebrate life with everyone we know.

By the way, I intend, by my own declaration, to be 60 years old.

We experience a change of lifestyle after youth and bearing our offspring.  The name mid-life crisis is given to this time.  I believe that 70 and even 60 years of age is either past mid-life or at least on the back end of that phase of life.  But there is a change to my lifestyle now.  Perhaps it needs a name.  Maybe it has a name, like retirement.  Maybe it should have a different name because retirement has a very specific connotation.

Each morning is better than the previous.  It's a joy to be able to wake up.  Each sunrise or overcast foggy morning is a piece of art greater than the previous one.  Each day is open for me to fill.  I have been blessed to with plenty of hair that is not gray on the top of my head and with the ability to walk and work.  Each day is a gift which I wish to graciously accept and fill so that it's the happiest day of my life.  A part of this effort is giving to people, mostly my time and my talents.  So my days are full of the routine, cooking, cleaning, answering emails, feeding the dog and chickens, and the non-routine, meetings, planning for meetings, responding to the results of meetings, sometimes teaching.

I sit more in this phase of life, reading, writing, thinking, listening, watching.  I wish to walk more to benefit my muscles and for my sensual enjoyment.  I wish to read and write more to learn more and to pass on what I know.

This post-mid-life phase of life is a gem, one continuous communication with God absorbing every gifted second.

At this moment I think of Rick, a friend of a casual nature only, but now I feel so close to him.  It's been over twenty years since I last saw him and then it was only once or twice a year, but after the news of his death in a car accident in Alaska before Christmas I think of him daily.  At this moment I would like to think that he could give me some of his writing skills which he displayed so well in his books and articles about living in Alaska.

Rest while, Rick.  I hope that I can carry forth the naiveté, and the fresh and caring view of life and nature you displayed.