When I get older
Losing my hair
Many years from now
Will you still be sending me a Valentine?
Birthday greetings bottle of wine?
If I’d been out
Till quarter to three
Would you lock the door?
Will you still need me
Will you still feed me
When I’m sixty-four?
When I’m 64, The Beatles
My breakfast, served by the Professor with love this morning, was pretty good. Eggs on a thin Everything Bagel slathered with Laughing Cow Lite cheese spread, chased with a glass of reduced fat, lactose free milk, and lots of hot coffee.
Better than they sound, after lots of practice in the last few years, I’m resigned to these shadows of real food.
The Professor waited on me (as he typically does every morning). He says he does it because he knows that even though I’m a morning person, I prefer to start the day inside my own head.
Don’t ask me to talk or think before I’m ready. I’m listening for the muse. And the Professor? He knows me well. After 38 years of marriage, he’s gotten used to it after lots of practice.
Because my days wind up into a whirl of frenetic activity, mornings generally start with thinking, a half an hour of reading, watching as much of the morning news as I can stomach, and finally, a shower before I’m off. Sometimes I write, if moved. This birthday was no exception.
Gloriously so, thanks to the Professor. This morning my thoughts are, unavoidably, about aging. Today I turned 64 and judging by what I’ve seen (and eaten) so far, it does indeed appear the Professor is sticking around. I think that despite my exit from social media, some of you are, as well.
Sixty-four. Heck, when I was a young chicken I never imagined actually being married, having a child, and certainly not having to eat the kind of food I should eat now. I didn’t imagine thinning hair, knee surgeries, or that being vulnerable to killer viruses could ever happen to me.
But they have. As happened to my grandparents, my parents, and will eventually befall even my darling grandchildren, unless we meet the Grim Reaper first the bad news is that these things and turning 64 are unavoidable.
But the good news is also that 64 is unavoidable. And for all its downsides, it isn’t so bad. I’ve gained a measure of wisdom. I’ve accomplished a lot. I’m healthy, my family is healthy, and there are still quite a few things left on the ol’ to-do list.
I’m still writing and you’re still reading. I’m needed. I still need the Professor and I still need you. It’s a reciprocal thing. For all he gives – all you give – I can still give back.
Today is my birthday… my 64th.
Before he left for work today the Professor kissed me and promised me a ribeye dinner with baked potato, salad, and some sort of appropriate birthday pie – I’ve asked for lemon meringue.
And I danced with the muse. That’s about as good as it could get for this lover of words, this compulsive communicator.
This morning, please understand my deep appreciation for your part in my life, even if we’ve just been getting acquainted on this blog.
On balance, God has been unfailingly good, life is good even though I’m eating differently and considering the merits of Rogaine. And even if the Reaper, grim or otherwise, is closer than ever.
Sixty-four could be scary, but I don’t think it is, it doesn’t have to be. Afterall, the answers to all my questions are apparently and resoundingly, yes.
Happy Birthday to me.