Aging is another word for Being Alive

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old,
we grow old because we stop playing.”  
            -George Bernard Shaw
 
Springtime greetings to you!  I’m so glad to be back in touch. I’ve just concluded teaching a 10-week healthy aging graduate course with Antioch University.  Some of you know, I made the weekly hike to their beautiful Santa Barbara campus. It was a joy and a professional stretch to teach what I love–principles of conscious living and healthy aging!  
 
My awesome students (therapists-in-training) ranged in ages from their 20’s to late 60’s and it was a unique multi-cultural and inter-generational experience. We covered a diverse terrain of aging concepts and controversies including;  What should we call older adults? Why do our bodies grow old?  Should people have the choice to end their lives? Is retirement obsolete?
 
According to the U.S. Labor Department, with 8,000 Boomers turning 65 each day, careers in successful aging will continue to be a high growth area in the next decade. As we find our places in an aging society, our discussions included three key ideas;  
 
1)  Aging is a gradual, lifelong process we all experience, starting at birth.  Aging is not a disease. However, our society is infected with an anti-aging mindset that treats it like a disease. 
 
2)  We’ve been taught that aging is synonymous with decline. We’ve learned to equate aging with heavy losses (which can happen). Yet, with a mature life being well lived, we have the opportunity to strengthen our muscles of appreciation for all we do have and take the action to share our gifts as wise elders.
 
3)  Children are wonderful teachers.  They help us to remember how to play, open our hearts and learn how to share our toys more.  The dilemma being that children and elders are increasingly becoming isolated from one another.  We must pursue more creative, meaningful and fun ways to connect all generations.  We need each other more than ever.
 
How are you doing in your process of living and giving?  Are you making gains with performing outrageous acts of silliness and dispensing kilos of kindness? 
 
I’d luv to receive your responses. 
Join me on my Facebook page; Gifts of Pro-Aging.
 
Remember, aging is another word for being alive.
May your Spring be celebratory and playful!
-Marcia

Leave a Reply