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What Old Age Is For

The question of why we have to get old has always bothered me. Why do wrinkles have to appear? Why do our bodies fail us? Why do our minds get fuzzy and our thoughts impossible to hold onto? Why can we start for another room and forget the reason for the trip on the way? The answer I've chosen? To teach acceptance of ourselves the way we are right this minute. When you're twenty, healthy, and quick-witted, it's easy to look down on those who aren't any of those things. We feel indestructible, and we're often impatient with those who are less so. When you're forty, you work hard to stay healthy, to look twenty, and to keep those wits sharp. But at sixty you begin to realize it's a losing battle. No amount of work or study can alter the facts of time's passage, no matter what modern gurus claim. We get older. We get old. That's not to say we have to give up, but we need to acknowledge that our physical and mental faculties will decline--are d