I’m in my 80s. Eighty-one, to be exact. Do you ever wonder what older people like me — and maybe you — are supposed to be doing? Taking a much-needed nap, perhaps? Soaking our dentures while trying to remember where we put our eyeglasses—which are most likely on top of our heads?
I reject the idea that our lives have to grow smaller as we grow older. They can expand. Eighty-somethings can write a bestselling book, a play or a symphony; give a lecture to a packed university auditorium; run a company; invent the next technological breakthrough — all while maybe also being a grandparent. We oldies might be volunteering our time and experience to help others succeed in their own lives. And, we may even be browsing through dating sites seeking new vistas for love in our next big act three after the death of a partner, a divorce or maybe a lifetime of being single.
All this only touches the mere surface of who we are — a collective, accomplished, fully-alive group of us in our mid-70s, 80s, 90s, and even 100s — and what we are up to! And this is why I decided to start writing this CelebrEighty column and opening up a community discussion.
In the weeks, months, and (universe willing) years ahead, I plan to share my experiences—personal, professional, and perhaps even romantic. I invite you to join me in each of these discussions, sharing your experiences and perspectives. I plan to dive in and explore such topics as:
Dating at Eighty and Beyond
How Our Adult Children Welcome Our Wisdom — or Not
Who We See in the Mirror and How it Reflects Our Inner Selves
Gifts to Give Now and Those to Leave to the World
Why the Fear of Death is In Fact Fear of Life…