Greetings for The Gambia, as always I hope this blog finds all of you in good health and high spirits. This is just a short blurb about one-of-the-many things that have been running through my mind lately.
What I'm starting to see is the significance (or not) of age. I am experiencing a new perspective on this thing that we seem to be bound by in the Western world. I say this because I've known many people that get trapped in their age-mindset. For example, I know someone who just turned 27-years, and he feels like he is "too old" to really do what he wants to do in life (i.e. travel) because it's "too late". SAY WHAT!? 27.. that's nuts. There are 65-year old women serving with me here in the Gambia as Peace Corps Volunteers, roughing it and simply living - what a badass.
My host mother, who is guessing to be around 62-years of age, is one of the hardest working women I know. I say this because she has had over 5-children, most of which are older than me; she is a grandmother to many and treats them as if they are her own. She goes to the farm and works alongside her children for hours at a time, sometimes all day. When she comes home, she tends to the one of her many, many gardens. During the rainy season, she helps with all of the farming and if she's feeling up to it, she'll walk over 5-miles to deliver the foodbowl to the rest of the family.
When I think of 60-year olds+ in America, most (NOT ALL) I would think are retired, dependent on one if not many medications, and pretty sedentary.. excuse me if my perception has been skewed.
Anyhow, what I'm getting at is when you stop focusing on "how old you are getting" and you just live, NOW because you still can, you begin to see that age is just a number... Sometimes, I feel like I'm 5-years old - hula hooping, playing in the dirt, laughing, care-free and blowing in the wind. Sometimes I feel about 70-years old - full of contemplation, insight, wisdom and settled in the ways of the world. Sometimes I feel 23-years old, full of creative energy, adventure, passionate and spontaneous.
What I'm getting at and what I'm coming to see is if you get "trapped" by a number given to you, you are likely to prevent yourself from living to the fullest, in every single moment; we are here, now. It's easy to fulfill a role that is given to you (or perceived to be), but that's just it - IT'S EASY. Well, I could go on repeating my thoughts, writing the same conclusions in a thousand different way, but I think you all get what I'm trying to say. If you want to be 5-years old for a day, do it - go rub some paint on the walls and buy a spongebob popsicle. If you want to be 80-years old, spend the day looking through photo albums, reading philosophy books and thinking about the "good ole days".
Never get stuck in the past or in the future - be here, now. Never get "stuck" in what everyone else your age is or isn't doing... just live!