"Begin doing what you want to do now. We are not living in eternity. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand-and melting like a snowflake." Sir Francis Bacon 1561-1626
In my twenties, in my fertile imagination, I was torch singer Peggy Lee, heart shaped push up red sequined flashy full length form fitting dress barely clinging to my breasts, with just a chance I might take a deep breath and reveal all. "Never know how much I love you," I'd purr into the mike in the most seductive way, "never know how much I care, but when you put your arms around me, I get a fever that's so hard to bear, you give me fever..." Ooooo ahhh.
At twenty, I had no voice and nowhere near enough guts to stand up half naked before a salivating audience. At twenty, at the beginning of my life, my plans were to graduate from college, then travel and teach and experience a few other careers and get married and have children. And then there came a point where all I'd planned for and all I'd been interested in doing came to pass. There I was, planted firmly in my sixties, with calmed down hormones, a yen to write and time to do it. Today I spend my life writing and painting, both joyful and life-affirming, and it seems I can do things I never could before.
Last fall I took "Joy of Singing" in the Osher Lifelong Learning program at the University of the Pacific and fell in love with singing. Not only in love with it, I found my voice improved over the ten sessions. I had no idea my voice would get better and stronger. This is not "Glee" or "Pitch Perfect." This is singing for the love of singing without tryouts, competition, snotty snarkiness, or performance. Along the way, my early and rejected piano lessons came back to me, and I began to remember how to read music again. Best part: just singing: singing show tunes, camp rounds, singing harmony, singing technical pieces and all for fun.
At this stage of my life I am more creative than I've ever been. This is absolutely incredible to me and I can't see it slowing down or stopping. Yesterday I watched "The Age of Champions" and saw a 100 year old tennis player compete at the highest levels of senior tennis, a team of sixty-five year plus women win a national basketball championship, and two brothers, 88 and 90 win swimming titles. Until April 28 you can see this movie at ageofchampions.org/premier.
There are harsh realities of getting older, but the aging brain has some major advantages and creative ability is one of them. Amazingly enough, I'm improving with age!
Baruch ata adonai...how grateful I am for health and for all the opportunities I have to stretch and grow and recreate my life each day. Amen