“Aging Isn’t For Wusses!”

As a youth, or even as a man, being called a “Wuss” meant you were a “weak or ineffectual person.” Nobody that I knew wanted to be seen that way. So being called a “wuss” was pretty much a ‘below the belt’ comment that stung badly.

Last week my wife, a home health care nurse, had a conversation with a 91-year-old man battling some health problems. After talking at length about it, he said, “Aging isn’t for Wusses! When she related her conversation to me, I laughed, not because the statement is in itself funny. But instead, because it was just an interesting way to state the truth! And I believe it is a true statement that getting old is not for the faint of heart.

Now in my mid-sixties, I question whether I should do certain things because of my age. When I was young, I would pretty much do any physical activity at the drop of a hat. Now, when my wife asks me to go get the mail at the box that sits a block from my house, I immediately start looking for the keys to my car. Are they still in the ignition, or did I leave them on the counter is the first question that comes to mind. Yikes! When did it all go so wrong?

Well, things are not quite that bad for me personally, but I have lost plenty of friends that are my age and many more who are about twenty years older. Almost every adult I looked up to as a kid is no longer living. But death, of course, is just the end game. It’s the getting there that tests you for “wussness.” (I don’t think that is a word, but at my age, you don’t care!)

One thing age has given me is a perspective on life. Some concepts and ideals that I held as absolutes are now great suggestions for living my life. And I think, looking back, I have learned that I should have been more understanding of the plight of others. Too often, I saw others’ lives through the prism of my own life experiences rather than with an open mind. I think many of us are guilty of that!

So, what is ahead? I don’t know. But physically, I know it’s not good. I once had a celestial body with all its youth. Now that my body has gone telestial, it’s given me pause if that is the kind of body I want for the eternities. Do I want an inferior body for all time? Or is it the best one made available to me upon the condition of my obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel? I don’t want to be a ‘wuzz’ but I prefer the later!

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