Are Your Dreams Keeping Up With Your Age?

Good morning, and happy Hump Day! I hope your day is off to a perfect start.

Today is my youngest grandson’s birthday. He’s five, and all that that implies. I called this morning to sing happy birthday, but not before I had him checking for chest hair. He’s pretty sure he’s all grown up.

And you know, I remember times in my life at various ages where I was pretty sure I was grown up. Like in first grade, when I was in “real” school and discovered an affinity for girls. I had similar feelings of maturity just about every year in school. And it doesn’t stop there. I sometimes even feel grown up today. I know. Delusions are just a normal part of life.

But when you think about it, everything is relative. To me, the little guy is just five. He’s only aged a year since his last birthday – that’s 1/62 of my life (so far, thank you). But to him, he’s aged by 25%. That’s a pretty huge jump. With each year that change is a little less dramatic until you’re in your 60s and it’s just another day.

Okay, first things first – every birthday should be a celebration. Yes, it’s just another day. One out of 366 (it’s leap year). But it’s still a special day and we should take advantage of that opportunity to make the birthday boy or girl feel special. It’s just a simple way of letting them know we’re happy they’re a part of our life. We should all do that a little more often.

And I know a lot of people don’t really want the attention, or at least they say they don’t. One of my daughters loves having the entire restaurant staff sing happy birthday, and the other dares us to let anybody know. Oh well, we’re the parents and embarrassing our kids in public is our God-given right.

But I get it. After a certain number of birthdays, the parties and cake are just fluff. And at my age, nobody would dare put that many candles on a cake, because it would collapse under the weight. You’d need a blowtorch to get them all lit and I’d need a bottle of oxygen to blow them all out. And you know what happens when you blow oxygen on a fire. There goes the house.

One of the blessings of having so many birthdays is that we don’t feel that much older each year. One of the downfalls is that we don’t feel that much older each year. It’s like taking a 1000-mile trip. You don’t notice every milepost along the way. But each “Welcome to our State” sign is a big deal, and there’s nothing quite like reaching your destination.

It’s the same in life. You don’t really notice each new wrinkle or age spot, but one day you wake up and realize an old person’s body has taken over your own. I notice it every time I get a haircut, because the barber stands behind me throwing somebody else’s gray hair all over the floor. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

It’s hard to see gradual change. Every day, things look pretty much the same as they did yesterday. And because we don’t notice the change, we don’t notice the lack of change. By this point in my life, I was supposed to be happily retired and living the good life. But somehow, I’ve allowed age to progress without much movement toward that dream. How about you?

Time moves on. That’s one of life’s certainties. And it happens whether we’re ready for it or not. It’s like looking at the calendar and realizing the bills are due or you’ve got a final exam today. Nothing changes the reality of those situations – not even burning the calendar. Believe me, I’ve tried.

Are there personal goals you’d hoped to accomplish by now? The correct answer is yes. So, here’s the real question – for those goals you’ve missed, is it all over or can you set a new date and try again? Or maybe you can modify the goal just a bit. That’s okay, as long as it’s still your dream and not what life decided to let you have.

All through life, we trim our dreams to match our reality. Whether that reality is constrained by age, education, income, or physical limitations, redefining dreams is something we do a lot. But we should never just let those dreams die. The key is finding ways to work around those limitations to enjoy life on our own terms.

You can’t stop time, but you can manage it. No matter how old you are, you still have time to dream and to accomplish those dreams. Put some of that time to work for you. There’s no telling what you might accomplish.

That’s all for now. Have an awesome day!

© 2020 Dave Glardon – All rights reserved

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