Giving thanks. 

There’s a quote out there that reads:

“Do not regret growing older. It’s a privilege denied to many”
– author unknown.

During my first year of college a kid from my High School class was walking home with his girlfriend after a trip to the corner store when he said his head suddenly started hurting. Before he could say anything else, he dropped dead. At age 18, an aneurysm took his life. I didn’t know him well, but he played basketball with my brother and he remembers him. A few of my college friends had been in his class. He was by all accounts a great guy with a promising future.

There are too many people in today’s society who have a psychotic fear of grey hairs and wrinkles. I actually had a coworker who, the second she found a gray hair, she would run to the nearest mirror and pull it out.

To me, age is a gift.

Older people are very respected in Mexico, where I grew up. As an adult, I first took care of my Grandmother in the U.S., then worked as a nurse aide at a couple nursing homes.

Age is beautiful. Yes, there’s wrinkles, grey hairs (or no hair at all), canes, walkers and extra paraphernalia. But there’s history. And good grief, history……..

I had the chance of meeting a man who fought alongside Patton, a woman who worked with presidents, a 98 year-old female archeologist, men and women with wisdom beyond your wildest imagination, and often a mischievous mind to match. Learning about food from my Abuela was beautiful; learning about life at a time of war from my Grandmother was eye-opening.
Inevitably, I held the hands of people as they moved on from this world.

With Thanksgiving upon us, what am I grateful for?

Age.

I’m thankful for the grey hairs on my head. I’m grateful for having lived long enough to meet a great man, blessed with a son and had the chance to live and travel in different cultures. I hope to continue doing so for many more years, and collect more wrinkles and greys.

Out of 4 grandparents, one lived to his 70s, two lived to their 90s and one made it to her 100s. I’m not sure how long I’m destined to hang out in this world, but I hope it’s a while.

What are you thankful for?

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