31 Days of Aging Gracefully: Day 7 — Staying Open


Our new home provides visual reminders on a moment-to-moment basis that it is a very good thing to stay open to the widest view possible. We are continually stunned by what we see from the entire backside of this house — the foothills, the city (with all it’s landmarks, including the mission — twin towers, can  you spot it?)

Here, maybe this one will help:


No matter which direction you face, there is something lovely and interesting to look at.


And at just the right spot, you can even see a glimpse of the harbor, especially if you use the zoom feature on your iPhone camera. (Smile.)


Although I am not interested in being ‘hip’ as an aging woman, I do want to stay at least somewhat current. I want to know what’s happening in our world, in our churches, in our families, in our communities. I want to be open to learning, changing, growing. The stereotypical picture of an old fogie is NOT what I want to become.

And it’s so easy to get there. Especially if I let yesterday’s lesson go to waste — if I choose fear over hope and joy. Many older folks are frightened, I think. And too often, they let that fear be the rudder of life. There is, under all else, the fear of death. But there are so many other things to fear — falling, failing, losing touch, life/culture/society changing beyond recognition. Yes, there are lots of things to be fearful about. But . . .

But there is also much to celebrate, to learn, to try. So . . . what if we begin to ask for hope early on in our lives? What if we make it a goal to learn more each year? What if we listen to people who disagree with us, civilly and earnestly? What if?

Maybe, just maybe, we might discover that life becomes more interesting, intriguing, palatable, maybe even more recognizable? Because let’s face it, friends:


Things shift, ideas morph, interpretations vary. Truth is truth — but our understanding of it does not stay the same. The world has never been flat, but for a whole lotta centuries, we were sure convinced of its flatness.

For me, a huge part of aging gracefully is cultivating a desire to preferentially lean toward openness. For that to happen, there must also be a regular, practiced release of . . . all that fear.

Which is why that was yesterday’s topic. And this one is today’s. (Smile)

Just Wondering

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  1. I’m liking the sound of this:”cultivating a desire to preferentially lean toward openness” combined with “practised release of… all that fear.” Oh yes, bring it on! Fear haunts us all our days but there are particular fears associated with ageing, just as you’ve highlighted here. To stay open-minded, open-hearted, open to goodness, love and grace would be a wonderful thing to aim at, especially in our latter days. A warm, generous spirit will attract and invite others to want to be with and seek to know us. Better by far than having a mean, cramped soul which focusses more on the negative side of life. Yep, count me in, Diana! I need no persuading. 🙂 x

  2. my dad was a life-long learner. up until the last year when he could no longer read and process, he would say “hey, i’ve been looking at a book here and look what I’ve learned. I want to be like that. There were somethings he decided he just have to learn anymore at some point – like he learned to do email and use the computer, but never got into the internet and looking things up. He also decided he didn’t have to like a lot of the contemporary music, but then he didn’t have to complain either. What a teacher he was.

    • Both great examples of what I’d like to be like – open to learning, but discerning what is critical for me and my life and what is not. Thank you, Carol!