How will I stay young at heart when I get older? If I think about the state my heart was in at various points in my earlier life, I wouldn’t trade it for the one I have now. I have a few more signs of wear and tear on the outside, but my heart is stronger now than it has ever been. I’ve earned all these years, and survived a lot of bumps and bruises to that heart, so I’m just working on accepting that years go by, and time doesn’t stop.
A couple of Saturdays ago, I dropped my twin daughters off at the local cinema with one of their school friends, so they could enjoy a movie. I didn’t want to crash their first girls’ night out, so I went to visit some friends we first met fifteen years ago, just after learning that we were expecting twins. They belonged to the local organization for parents of multiple births. We already had a one-year-old, so we felt we needed some support–help! Twin newborns, and a 17-month-old, at the same time! How would we survive??
We saw them more often when our kids were small. At the time, it seemed the exhaustion of the baby and toddler stages would never end. Now, their twin boys are 18, and on the verge of moving out. During this visit, instead of discussing where to get the best deal on diapers, and the like, we talked about the ins and outs of helping out kids decide what to do after high school, their part-time jobs, and how to survive our teenagers learning to drive. I noticed that she put her glasses on every time she needed to look at her phone or read something, while I tended take mine off. Between the three of us, we definitely have some wrinkles and (gasp) a bit of grey hair. Yikes! Or, maybe not. It’s the truth, so I might as well face it.
If someone showed me a photo of what I would look like fifteen years into the future, I wonder what I would think. Would I feel regret for the new wrinkles, maybe the white hair? (I predict that I’m going to skip grey and go straight to white, like my great-aunt Marie–except that it happened to her when she was about 25.) Or would I look into the eyes in that picture and see signs of peace and assurance? I’d like to think so. I think the best way for me to stay young at heart is to try to keep accepting life as it comes, as well as I am able, to love and accept love from the people around me, and to remember that God is in charge.
I couldn’t have foreseen some of the trials and adventures that life has thrown at me so far. Some of them were pretty tough, others were awesome beyond my imagination, and there are likely more in store. So, I’m just going to hang on and make the best of the ride. Young at heart is definitely a state of mind, and I think I’ve actually been getting better at it along the way.
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