Much as I'd like to think of myself as a little kid still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up, I am not a young person anymore. And over the years too many people whom I've loved have passed away, some way too young. As each family member or friend passed, the state of my own mortality reared its ugly head.
I was just 30 when my parents died. And now I am among the oldest generation in my family. I am one year older than my mother was when she died. And over the years the fear of death washed over me at various times.
I reconnected to some high school friends a few years ago. I wonder if they, too, have had the same thoughts that I do. We're all still entwined with busy lives, some have had medical issues, others are doing well, physically. At a special high school class reunion about a year ago (which I did not attend because of distance and timing), the names listed on the In Memoriam page had me reeling.
I simply don't think of myself as part of the "older generation." And that's probably a good thing. Perhaps, as 'they' say, age is just a state of mind. I can't do some of the stuff I did when I was 20 or 30 but I over the years I've learned to do so many other things. And I've got so much more I want to do.
So, maybe these thoughts of my mortality serve to encourage and stimulate me to continue to be active, to learn new stuff (Photoshop comes to mind), to do things I haven't done before and see things I haven't seen before, to be active politically as a liberal living in a looney red state, to do things to help the community and on and on and on.
Learning and activity can be powerful tools to keeping a younger outlook on life. I hope those tools and living a healthy lifestyle keep me going for a very long time, at least until I'm 120!