By Sanderson Sims
Next month I will turn 80. Yes 80. Can’t really believe it. My jaw drops at just how fast I’ve gotten here: like waking up from anesthesia and wondering what the operation was like. Meaning that daily life, the routines and endeavors I engage in, seem to have been just one steady stream that launched slowly and then became a rocket ride.
My body is older and slower, but my thinking and curiosity about the world I live in and what’s going on around me, still seems to be a constant. I am a kid at heart, still trying the limbo from time to time, but the bar is infinitely higher.
Then there are the subtle changes. Like being a butterfly that slowly quits flying, spins a cocoon and emerges as a caterpillar.
I am no longer trying to make a mark in the world, no longer trying to see what I can accomplish. No longer too busy to appreciate the small things in life, meager as they have become. Like a day without appointments, or telling the trainer I am too lazy today to lift weights,
I’m still curious, but not obsessively so. I still love gaining a useful insight, but not at the expense of enjoying a conversation or an extra cup of coffee. Yes, the world situation is fraught with a lot of “Ain’t it awfuls” but I like being a spectator now, not on the field waving a flag demanding this or that, but sitting in the stands not without an opinion or hoped for outcome, but just a cheer or “aw shucks” before casually exiting the stadium.
I have noticed that there is time to now marvel at the incredible beauty and complexity of mother nature and it’s creations. The shape and beauty of endless plants and all manner of animals and insects, not mention spectacular landscapes and seascapes The whole thing is just stunning. Throw in what our species has created and I honestly don’t know where it will all go, only that others will keep the show on the road.
I have given myself permission to get lost in fiction and entertainment. To say good bye to the Protestant Work Ethic. I have noted that nothing in excess seems to be a good guide even though I like testing the threshold from time to time.
Before there were greater fears and concerns. Less so now. Before there was a drive to think and create. Not so now. Before there was an obsession to fill the mind. Now my desire is to empty it and embrace that, then observe what it leads to.
It’s a new horizon. Comforting and challenging, yet peacefully exciting.
Photo Credit: Brodie, Burst Photos