Last night I was chatting with a woman who just celebrated her 80th birthday with a fabulous party. She is in good health, lives in her own home, drives her own car, and dresses with modern style.
She told me: “When my kids started planning this party, I said, ‘I’m not old.’ I’m glad they did it now, because I was really able to enjoy it. And you know, I don’t feel old.”
Now, depending on your own age and the company you keep, you are either thinking, “Eighty? That’s ancient!” or “Eighty? That’s a kid!” As a Lutheran pastor in a rural setting, I think of eighty as the very beginning of “old”. (Pro Tip: I don’t go around telling this to octagenarians. Not that there’s anything wrong with being old, right?)
But as they say, you’re as old as you feel. I have known some spry and lively nonagenarians and some cranky and curmudgeonly thirty-year-olds. Your age doesn’t change who you are.
Then there is my dad, who turns 68 next week. As you know if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, he was diagnosed with kidney cancer last fall, had a big surgery, and then had heart trouble. (His heart rate was too fast, and now it’s too slow. My dad is a cardiac Goldilocks.) He doesn’t have any symptoms right now, so his doctors are just monitoring that and the cancer. But he feels so good, and is so ecstatic that he feels so good, that none of this worries him too much. So in his case, you’re as well as you feel.
So in honor of eighty-year-olds who don’t feel old and sixty-eight-year-olds who forget they have cancer because they feel so good, please enjoy this Pepsi commercial from the 1960s: