But why do I give a damn in the first place?
Like many people who reach life's midpoint, I find I still have many things I want to do, goals I want to accomplish, visions for myself and for my life that I have yet to fulfill--visions that, as with many of us, I thought already would have been fulfilled by now.
And yet I also intend to live to be at least ninety.
Here's the thing: If I intend to live into my nineties, I have four decades waiting to be filled. If I had already accomplished everything I wanted to do with my life, what would I be doing with those four decades? Rocking in a rocking chair griping about how things ain't the way they used to be back in my day?
The secret fear, of course, is that I won't actually make it that far.
Fair enough. Life certainly throws its share of curve balls. Yet on reflection, I'd rather plan and prepare for more years than I have than sit around for decades waiting to die. A truly successful life, however long it lasts, should always end with some business left unfinished. I want my life to be a work in progress right up until the end.
And if I plan to live into my nineties, I need to make peace with the fact that I will not always look forty--and that a well-earned, authentic old age is indeed a beautiful way to be.