Senior Advice: With age comes a certain freedom
Nov 16,2007 00:00 by Doug_Mayberry

Q: There is so much discussion about age now. Nevertheless, many family members are asking me how I feel on a regular basis. Maybe it's because I have just had my 65th birthday, but I'm not overly concerned about my health and future. I do feel blessed and lucky, but do I have to defend it?

A: Maybe adult kids are beginning to feel a few aches and pains themselves. Not having actually experienced some bodily changes they may now be looking for a little support and advice.

Take the positive approach. Not everyone gets the opportunity to age! Such major events as losing our mates, the memories of a wonderful life and loving families will always remain. We can still share good times with old friends.

Many of us are lucky enough to find a partner to love and who loves us. Having options, sharing time, open communication, not being obligated to work or commitments, not overly worrying about our shapes, and other options can be a source of new found freedom.

New habits - such as becoming more messy, going to bed at 7 p.m. and waking up at 2 a.m. to play on the computer or watching an old Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers movie are not bad options.

Sometimes, and if we are lucky, we can afford to be a little extravagant and buy something we don't need, but want.

Experiencing freedom and not being committed to the clock is a great stress reliever. The joy of being imperfect has its own rewards. Of course our memories are failing, but somehow we are still able to remember the important things like paying the mortgage and sending birthday cards. Aging is a gift you don't want to miss. Not everyone gets the opportunity. Enjoy, laugh, and hopefully your enthusiasm expresses the gift of life to others!

Q: During the holidays, I find more things to do and think I won't be able to get them done. Because we also have a large number of birthdays during the holidays I am also I have to watch my budget carefully. In our 60s, do we still need to stay as involved or can we relax a bit?

A: Fast-paced living is today's attitude and approach to life. Many of us realize if we don't stay engaged and know what an iPod is we are out of touch with grandchildren. Computer technology means instant communication, dispersion of power and influence and other cultural changes. How can young people in garages become multimillionaires so quickly? .

In re-evaluating priorities you can simplify your routine. Do you really need to send so many holiday cards? Can you keep your cell phone number secret? Can you see humor in everyday battles? Do you have someone to love you? Can you do some manful volunteering? Is there time for a daily walk? Does a grandchild need you?

Can we still do it all? Reality says, "No." Traditions are expressive but should not drain your capability and energy. Give up some of your more stressing routines and by doing so you and your family will experience more relaxed and enjoyable holidays, and birthdays!

Doug Mayberry lives in a retirement community in Southern California. Send your questions to him at or write to him at P.O. Box 2649, Carlsbad, CA 92018.

© Copley News Service