Do you ever look in the mirror and feel shocked to see a grown up staring back at you? Do you ever look in the mirror and realize that you can no longer pretend that you are still young, cool, and hip, and you are forced to face the fact that instead of being hip, you now have to worry about breaking a hip instead! Ah, yes, the joy of getting old.
A few weeks ago we were at a family party when my daughter came up to me and asked me in a very serious and sincere way “Mom, you’re 50?? You look great for being 50!” Yeah, so that would have been a really sweet compliment except for the fact that I am ONLY 42! What the heck?!? She honestly thought she heard a sibling mention 50 and she just went with it. WOW! That was a humbling moment for sure.
Another humbling moment is realizing that very soon you will be an empty nester as both your children will be gone from home attending college as adults. At that point there is just no denying that you are now officially getting old, and for me that time is coming way too fast. My daughter graduates High School next week and my son is coming home from his mission next week. Both of them will be off to college in the fall and I will be here in this empty nest feeling very very old for sure.
That being said there are actually a few benefits to getting older. The following quote states one benefit perfectly:
“At the age of 20, we don’t care what the world thinks of us; at 30, we worry about what it is thinking of us; at 40, we discover that it wasn’t thinking of us at all.”
No question the perspective we gain as the years go on help us become far more comfortable in our own skin and that alone is worth getting one or two wrinkles to have learned. But the very best lesson I have learned in my 42 years is coming to understand what TRUE JOY is. I have learned that TRUE JOY is this:
- Waking up every morning with purpose
- Putting 110% of your heart and soul into accomplishing good things each day alongside people you love and respect and look up to
- Living your life with integrity and a desire to be a truly good person
- Sitting down for dinner with food on your table
- Eating that food with family you love while you share the details of each other’s day. Laughing together, crying together, and loving each other unconditionally
- Kneeling down by your bed at night to thank God for all you have been given and asking Him to help you to be even more tomorrow than you were today
THAT is TRUE JOY, and I am so grateful to have a life that is joyous. Sure there are plenty of ups and downs and without question life is full of never ending problems and stresses, but I have the things that truly matter in my life. I have an amazing family that I love with all my soul. I have incredible friends and mentors that I am honored to associate with. I have the best business partners that anyone could ever ask for. I have a testimony that God is my Heavenly Father and that he knows me and loves me and is always there for me. And I have a desire to wake up every day and try to do better than I did the day before. Yes, my life is truly joyous and I am grateful for that.
Thank you to all of you who take the time out of your day to read my blog, to go along my life journey with me and try to glean something from the lessons I myself am learning each day of my growing older. Your kind notes many of you send are the perfect motivation for me on those days that I don’t feel like picking up the keyboard and typing away. All of you are part of the JOY in my life, so thank you!
Today’s challenge is to recognize that growing old isn’t necessarily a bad thing – it has its upsides, and to recognize that true joy comes from the simple things in life and it comes every day if you just let it :) Have a joyous day everyone.
Tagged 42, 50, accomplishment, age, ashley, break a hip, college, comfortable, confidence, cool, Dalton, daughter, desire, empty nest, empty nester, family, getting old, God, graduation, grateful, gratitude, grow old, happiness, happy, hard work, Heavenly Father, high school, hip, humbling, integrity, joy, laughter, leave home, love, mission, old, peace, problems, purpose, stress, testimony, true joy, young