Traveling Light to Age 97 and Beyond

Last year David and I emptied out our house that had sold in three days. I’d lived in Tucson for almost 50 years. He had lived there for almost 20. There was a lot of stuff for us to go through, but we both were thinking that the lighter we are stuff-wise, the easier it will be for us to get to that mythical age of 97 together.

 

By Carmelene Melanie Siani

 

“Did turning 70 cause you to start thinking about how few years you have left?” a friend asked me recently.

As it turns out she had herself just turned 70 and it bothered her. “In 15 years I’ll be 85. Will I live to be 85?” she went on, almost musing out loud to me the thoughts she’d been having when she was alone.

I told her that I did think in those terms—those “life isn’t going to go on indefinitely” terms. That was definitely not the way I thought about life in my youth. Hell. When I was 50, it seemed as if 77 years (the age I am now) would be eons before I reached it.

I remember when I turned 60 my daughters wanted to have a big birthday party for me.

“You’re 60 Mom. We want to make a special celebration.” “Thank you so much,” I told them, “But as far as I’m concerned, I’m not 60. I’ll let you know when I am.” I’ve thought that my life has seemed fore-shortened because of my recent illness and that feeling my strength and my vitality and my sense of self drain away was what was causing me to count the years.

But maybe not.

Maybe it just happened as I left 60 behind. In fact, maybe it’s natural, appropriate, timely even. Certainly my husband and I talk about it.

“I’d like us to have 20 years together” he’s said at least 20 times and I remind him that I’ll be 97 in 20 years—and so will he. “So?” he says—he of the never has been to a doctor in his life, who weighs about 10 pounds more than he did in high school and who still has a full head of hair.

Last year David and I emptied out our house that had sold in three days. I’d lived in Tucson for almost 50 years. He had lived there for almost 20. There was a lot of stuff for us to go through, but we both were thinking that the lighter we are stuff-wise, the easier it will be for us to get to that mythical age of 97 together.

“Travel light,” David said, and in that vein, we committed to bring with us only enough of our favorite things to fit into our new 700 square foot one bedroom apartment in San Diego.

“Not having a lot of stuff will make it easier when we move back to Tucson,” we tell each other and I think, bottom line—it will also make it easier for everybody when we die. There just won’t be so much for our kids to go through.

Besides, it’s easier to get to that mythical place in the sky when you are traveling light.

It’s like the only thing I want to take with me is one little suitcase crammed full of love. One that will make it till I’m 97—and beyond.

 

Photo: Pixabay

Editor: Dana Gornall

 


 

Did you like this post? You might also like:

Let Freedom Sing: A Break up Letter to Addiction.

  By Gerri Ravyn Stanfield   I never thought I would make it past 30. Birth was the first time I took air inside myself.  Then, the new sound from my raw throat floated away from me. That first time my voice pierced the world, I was not welcome. I longed to...

The Unsexy, Unfunny Reality of Depression.

  By Kristin Diversi Depression is a funny thing. Actually, it’s not funny. It’s not funny in the way that Seinfeld isn’t funny---it’s just life, and it’s just there, but when you look at it from the outside, all of a sudden you can’t believe how fascinating the...

Finding the Sacred in 2016.

  By BethAnne Kapansky Wright As we say goodbye to 2016 and welcome 2017 into our grasps, it is my reflection that 2016 was a difficult year for many. The worst, some have said; and I feel that. So many tragedies, so many losses, so many hits to our hearts on...

What is Gestalt?

  By Nina Rubin   If you want to become whole, Let yourself be partial. If you want to become straight, Let yourself be crooked. – Tao Te Ching, verse 22. It recently occurred to me that many of my readers don’t know too much about my work as a Gestalt Coach...

Comments

comments

Carmelene Melanie Siani

Carmelene Melanie Siani is a 77 year old woman who began writing for publication on her 73rd birthday in 2015. She writes stories and vignettes about life and how life itself gives us the lessons, hopes and direction we need to put our feet on higher ground. You can find her writing at elephant journal, the Kindness Blog, and on her writer’s Facebook page.

Latest posts by Carmelene Melanie Siani (see all)

(Visited 146 times, 1 visits today)