by Skip Cohen
I woke up this morning knowing exactly the topic I wanted to hit, but not how to get there! The topic was the joy and frustration of aging. Not from a health perspective, but patience in dealing with an ever-changing world. At a time when so many of my counterparts have retired, or worse, withdrawn, I'm having the time of my life.
That's not to suggest that life is smooth sailing and every day is sunshine and happiness. It never is, but there are these stellar snapshots of life in between those moments of stress over business, health, and the world. Well, trying to express what I wanted this morning, I turned to one of my favorite books, "Age doesn't matter unless you're a cheese."
I found two quotes that I loved, which seemed to reflect where my head is this morning:
"They say stress is a killer. But I think no stress is equally deadly, especially as you get older. If your days just seem to slip by without some anxieties and pulse-quickening occurrences, you may not be really living."
"Never retire! Do what you do and keep doing it. But don't do it on Friday. Take Friday off. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday do fishing, do sexual activities, watch Fred Astaire movies. Then from Monday to Thursday, do what you've been doing all your life, unless it's lifting bags of potatoes off the back of a truck. I mean, after eight-five that's hard to do. My point is: Live fully and don't retreat."
There you have it - I'm betting most of us feel like our lives have never been more stressful. Between health, business, politics, and the Taliban, the world is a mess. We can't hide, but we don't have to give in to it either. That's where Mel Brooks takes over.
All we can do is manage our little piece of the world. Those smiles you see on my face, and Sheila's come from within. They come from an incredible appreciation for that old line about "life not being a dress rehearsal." And while there are days when we have to dig deeper than others to laugh, we've built a tiny piece of the world that's just ours. So we talk a lot about how we got here, how we wound up together, how two pups keep us laughing and how much we simply appreciate our life.
Are there days when we can't seem to pull ourselves out of the abyss? Of course, but somehow we always find a way to rise above it. That statement about it takes a village couldn't be more appropriate. So, take good care of your village and do your best to give back as much as you need to take.
Wishing everybody a day where you appreciate everything in your life, even the most challenging moments. Never think a problem is without solutions...and when in doubt, laugh...take Mel Brooks' advice - Live fully and don't retreat! Go for those eleven-second therapeutic hugs I always write about with the people you love the most, or maybe it's somebody relatively new, who you're growing to appreciate.
Happy Sunday...or Monday if you're on the other side of the world.
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.