A friend of mine celebrated her 88th birthday recently, and she has so much to celebrate, as nowadays this gorgeous woman does not let age define her. In the last 10 years Dorothy has made some huge changes in the way she lives and as a result she is now feeling more alive and more vital than she has ever done. She is redefining the truth about ageing, as she shows me, and everyone around her, that we are never too old to make a change, or as in Dorothy’s case, many changes, in our lives.
There have been many times during my life when I have heard older people say that it’s too late to change, that they’re too old to try anything new and, with what often seems to be a very defeatist attitude, simply give up even considering trying and so choosing to stay stuck in the same old worn out groove. And then there are those who don’t for a moment consider that there’s anything wrong with how they are living and continue to make the same choices and wonder why they have the same outcomes time after time. I used to be one of those.
Over the last 11 years Dorothy has made many changes in her life, including her diet, removing certain foods that her body had been struggling to process and as a result she has noticed a wonderful improvement in her health and vitality. And as a bonus, the extra weight she had been carrying for many years, has been released. In fact, she is looking younger than when I first met her about 10 years ago and friends who haven’t seen her for a while are blown away by the huge change in her, in all aspects of her life. She walks nearly every day and loves nothing more than walking through town smiling her beautiful smile at everyone she meets. I know that this smile and the wisdom that she often stops to share, has the power to change someone’s day. And one morning a week she volunteers at the local hospice shop, having been a valuable hospice volunteer for over 20 years. Yes, she has her tired, not so well, and low days, but she bounces back fairly quickly.
But the biggest change she has made, outside of her health and well-being, is learning to use a computer at the tender age of 85. In fact, when she bought her first computer she had never had her hands on a keyboard, so she had two things learn, and just to add another challenge, she has dyslexia. But she hasn’t allowed that to hold her back in any way. She knew that if she wanted to stay in regular contact with friends all around the world, letter writing was simply too slow, therefore to become computer literate was the only way to do so, and with the most amazing commitment, lots of patience, and the occasional meltdown, she has. She always jokes that Spellcheck and the delete button are her best friends. I love getting her emails as I know what she has been through to be able to be connected to the world.
There is so much more I could share about the ever-changing world of my gorgeous friend but I am sure you get the picture.
So, if you’re ever feeling that you need, or want, to make some changes in your life – no matter what your age – but it all seems a little hard, remember Dorothy and allow her to be your inspiration.
She has been mine on many occasions. She has proved to me and to so many others, that you are never too old to change the way you live, and in doing so you might just bring more joy, vitality and sparkle into your life, and from there into the lives of others.