Have you thought about what you'll be like when you're 70? Have the older women in your life been good role models in regards to how to age gracefully?
I'll give you two examples of women in their 70s from my own experience: My mother-in-law and my mother.
My MIL died in May. When she was young and middle-aged, she was a beautiful, accomplished, generous, lady-like ball of energy. She taught school full-time, sang with a local opera company, and was always dressed impeccably. She was a great mom to her two kids. In the last 10 years before she died at 72, she made choices about her quality of life that led to her becoming a severe alcoholic. She did NOT want to be old and did not want to live anymore. She shoved everyone around her out of her life, including her only grandchild.
My mother grew up in poverty. She quit school in the 10th grade. She had her first child when she was 17 (married a guy to get herself out of that poverty), and then walked away from that marriage because he was abusive. What she did was NOT common back in the 60s, but she determined to make her and her daughter's lives better. She met my dad and married him and it took a few years before she stopped being in "survival mode." My dad provided the stable life that she had never had before. She did OK as a mother, but it definitely could have been a more enjoyable experience for both her and her children. She's 74 now. Do you know what her latest comment to me was? "It's all in the attitude. I see women around me that are my age who are barely living. I'm not going to do that!"
What about you? What about me? The decisions we make NOW will affect who we will be in our later years. Our early life experience doesn't have to dictate the future, nor do the changes of life have to cause us to stop living a full life.
I'd like to hear your thoughts on this as well as any examples of positive aging you've encountered, please. Then I think I will print them out and put them in a safe place to read as I age!