On turning 60, my cousin Leslianne relayed to me that it was surreal. “60 is not an age!” she said “60 is a concept!”
And that’s the thing with this age business. It becomes less and less real, more and more abstract. Today is my birthday and I am a proud 53. But it’s as though I’m in a large room and 53-year-old me is at the front of the room while the real me looks on from the back, shaking her head in confusion and astonishment.
“She couldn’t be 53!” says real me.
“How did this happen?” says real me.
“53 is not an age, it’s a concept!” says real me.
All the while 53-year-old me is oblivious. She eats breakfast in bed made by one of her adult children. She reads through Facebook and text messages from all over the world wishing her a Happy Birthday. She glances at herself in the mirror and thinks “The grey hairs have to go! I need a little L’oreal Magic in a bottle”. She blogs about being a proud 53 all the while knowing that given the western addiction to youth, she’s becoming irrelevant by the day.
- A proud 53. Real me tries to reconcile with this older me. Real me knows that aging, and all that goes with it, is an inevitable part of this world, but holds tight to the knowledge that we are made in the image of God, created for eternity. Real me looks at 53-year-old me and thinks “Give her grace God because she is really going to need it!”
Real me reaches across the room and offers a hand to 53-year-old me. Hands clasped they look up to Heaven and pray they will laugh together at the years to come.