The sun is basking lawns with warmth. We live in Colorado, for the moment, where it’s sunny more often than not. This is Yvonne and my office window looks out on a quiet, comfortable neighborhood. Neighbors who work outdoors on lawns and driveways wave to one another, stop and chat, or let dogs greet each other with that nose sniff thing they do.
I doubt very many of my neighbors wake up to a real 100+ year life – today or any other day. They wake up, and like all of the rest of us, go about their lives with little thought to how long they might live.
The flu could take them out, this year. It’s rampant across the country and worse than ever, so TV news tells us.
They could go to the next world five minutes after driving out of their driveway, so reports tell us that 70% of deaths occur within 10 miles of our homes.
And accidents within the home – don’t get me started!
We know the stats. We hear the news. We brush it off with a shrug or a wave of our hand because, in reality, “it won’t happen to me.”
I know there is a reluctance to think about our next world or life or what happens when we die. I get that. It’s not for me to ponder further than I have here. What I want to do is talk about living. Talk about the idea that – if your optimism is correct and none of the above happens to you – might you live to be 100+ years old?
More and more people give me a long stare when I say that. The “might” gets them. Because it’s true. We all might live to be 100+ years.
And, maybe that scares people more than the flu, or driving in their car, or accidents in the home.
Because that 100+ Year Life is … dark and dismal and awful to consider.
Or is it?
Instead of picturing yourself stumbling along with a cane, back bent like a question mark, think of yourself as standing tall, full of vigor, tackling that daily jaunt about the neighborhood with a happy smile on your face.
Instead of thinking of yourself sitting at your kitchen table sorting through your daily dose of medication, wondering how you managed to get to six or seven or eight bottles, think of yourself as having coffee, reading the paper (if we still have papers – maybe it will be on your laptop or tablet), taking vitamins and maybe one or two prescriptions, not twenty.
Instead of wondering how you’ll live when you’re 100 years old, where and in what condition, think about this:
- Being happy and healthy, now, in preparation for then
- Enjoying your life the way you did at 20
- Keeping up with the great-grandchildren
- Looking forward to tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow, with anticipation and joy.
That’s what a 100+ year life is all about. It’s about positive mindset and good health. It’s about rejoicing in your age. It’s about learning how to be that person, now.
Tom, my husband who started this whole 100+ life thing, asks, ” What would your 100+ year old self tell you?”
As someone who never expected to live to be 100, and who couldn’t have cared less, I am now pausing in my senior-hood and giving this idea a chance to grow in my consciousness. I don’t feel old yet (well, some days I do), and while I have a drawer in my night stand with my medication, only three are prescription. I am healthy for the most part. I have some minor issues, but nothing to cry about. And, both of my parents lived long, healthy lives. For the most part.
Each day brings more joy and delight to my life. I converse with my grandchildren via the Internet (when my three year old grandson says, with tears in his eyes, “Grandma can we come visit you today?” and I have to shake my head and say no, NY is too far away, I know it’s time to move back home), I write in my blogs and I’m working on a new ebook. I take the warmth from the sunshine coming in my office window, and I wrap it around me like a comfortable sweater. There is no thought in this life of leaving anytime soon.
I can see myself as a vibrant, happy, healthy 100 year old woman. And, because of that, I am working on making it happen, now!
Are you? Are you ready to stop thinking about when you ‘might’ leave this planet, and start planning for a longer, happier stay?