How Old Is Old To You?

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I’m 38 years old. At just a couple of years from the big 4-0, I already consider myself old. And that’s perfectly alright with me. I actually love being of ‘mature’ age. It means that I have grown, evolved and changed into a better, more rounded and grounded person, at least in my opinion. I’m no longer bothered by the small things and I’ve learned to choose my battles. I don’t miss my 20s when I thought I would never tire of such a life full of excitement and drama (and nights of partying ’til dawn). Now, I’ve learned that there is beauty in a more settled life. When I was younger, I used to get so anxious when I got bored. Now, I see boredom as a sort of peace, a time to breathe. I feel centered and right where I want to be at 38.

However, settling down doesn’t necessarily mean that I have stopped living. Age has actually helped me focus on what I really want in my life. I am able to pursue my dreams with more purpose and maintain the aspects of my life that I have always loved or felt will always be essential to my being me… my being authentic. I am now more self-aware, that I am able to make the necessary life decisions that allow me to love and accept myself more.

It was during these past couple of years that I’ve taken more risks than I have during the early years of my life, such as deciding to devote my time to my family, letting go of a stable 9 to 5 job. I find joy and fulfillment in being there for my children 99% of the time while still finding the time to write and create, a passion of mine, through freelance projects and part time jobs. I’ve also put more focus on my health, as I try everyday to eat better and stay fit. Ballet is also a big part of me. I fell in love with it as a child and have always regretted not pursuing it. I was already 30 when I decided that I wanted ballet to be a part of my life once again. So against all odds, with some people doubting me and asking me “but, why?”, I went ahead and danced. I have not stopped since.

A couple of days ago, I happened upon this video entitled, What Is Old?, by AARP, a foundation that helps people turn their dreams into real possibilities, strengthens communities and fights for the issues that matter most to families — such as employment security, health care and retirement planning. The video revealed what the younger generation thought was the age that qualified as being ‘old’. Surprisingly, some said that people in their 50s and even 40s were already considered old and demonstrated how weak and inept people of this age could be.

An interesting twist in the video showed older people in their 50s to their late 70s being introduced to the younger age group and they were tasked to teach each other something new. It was only then that the young ones realized how wrong they were about people of age. See for yourself:

My takeaway from the video was from the man who said, “when people start stopping, then that’s the time they start getting old”. There is so much truth to that statement. I could not have said it better myself. We are never too old to start something, learn something new and keep growing and evolving. And most especially, we are never too old to teach the younger generation a thing or two. This video is truly an inspiring demonstration that age is really nothing but a number.


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