Our life’s worth. Value. Purpose. Maybe that conjures images of grandeur, of heroism, of large impact. But I know the worth of a life can also be found in quiet ways, small moments, simple gestures.
In the summer of 1981, I was living in Boston and participating in a summer placement during graduate school. One morning, I happened to turn on the television, and lo and behold: the wedding of Diana and Charles was happening at that moment!
The four Indonesian boys, all small but ranging in age from 12 to 14, led us along a tree-lined path. The fenceposts to either side of us as we left the island village were sprouting trees, a testament to the proliferating growth and superb soil of these many islands.
Wikipedia defines successful aging as “physical, mental and social well-being in older age.” The authors of Successful Aging: The MacArthur Foundation Study, John Rowe, MD, and Robert Kahn, PhD, define it as “the cross-section between three components.”
There’s no question that having a support system and a sense of community is important as we get older. Face-to-face friendships matter. Study after study report that friendships are vital to longevity, and to our physical and mental health.
If you’re passed 60, you might be giving in to the misguided images that society has long promoted about being older.
Most of the hundreds of decisions we make every day are almost automatic: what to wear, when to go to the grocery store or which route to take.