Thursday, February 09, 2017

Turning a corner...

Thursday,  February 9th, 2017

I am glad to report that my ego is subsiding!!  And what a comfortable feeling that engenders....

It appears that things that I thought (at one time)  only I was capable of doing properly and creatively are being competently and creatively accomplished by others, with ease and aplomb!!!  How arrogant my ego must have been, (she said, shamefacedly).

I now find it is amazingly wonderful to accept this epiphany quite humbly, and to relax into lovely old age, content to read and knit and weave and muse and listen to music.  I have even gone back to a 'cleaning lady' - in my case a sweet daughter-in-law, - and a son-in-law who keeps the snow at bay and the lawns trim and neat.

What does all this mean?  Have I turned a corner and am I now ambling contentedly along the grassy path that stretches out deliciously into the future, and ends in the 'next adventure'.

Before I was REALLY old I used to keep this poem on my fridge door to remind myself of the pits the years might lead me to stumble in to.

"Lord, thou knowest better than myself that I am growing older and will soon be old. 
 Keep me from becoming too talkative,
 and especially from the unfortunate habit of thinking that I must say something 
on every subject and at every opportunity.

Release me from the idea that I must straighten out other people's affairs.
  With my immense treasure of experience and wisdom it seems a
pity not to let everybody partake of it.  
But thou knowest, Lord,that in the end I will need  a few friends.

Keep me from the recital of endless details;  give me wings to get to the point.

Grant me the patience to listen to the complaints of others;  
help me to endure them with charity.
  But seal my lips on my own aches and pains -
 they increase with the increasing years
and my inclination to recount them is also increasing.

I will not ask thee for improved memory,
 only for a little more humility and less self-assurance 
when my own memory doesn't agree with that of others.  
Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be wrong....

Keep me reasonably gentle. 
 I do not have the ambition to become a saint
 - it is so hard to live with some of them 
- but a harsh old person is one of the devil's masterpieces.

Make me sympathetic without being sentimental, helpful but not bossy.
  Let me discover merits where I had not expected them, 
and talents in people whom I had not thought to possess any.
  And Lord, give me the grace to tell them so.  Amen'

But that was in the days before I got ancient.  The days before I became so irked at the necessity of having to scroll down dreadfully far on my computer screen to fill out online forms with my year of birth.....

I am seriously thinking of giving up meetings where I have to read the minutes to know what has evolved, - especially the meeting for organizations where I pass myself off as a Secretary!!

It is so sweet when the little ones lisp, I am almost three......  not so adorable when one has to admit that they are almost ninety-three!  But it does elicit a gasp of what? Surprise? Sympathy?  A lessening of expectations?

Still, I am so glad to be rid of that dratted ego that sent me on so many wild goose chases!!!!

I have a vague feeling (not unusual these days) that I may have posted on this subject before, but there!  I am quite used to repeating myself.....

"The older I get the less I know.  It's wonderful - it makes the world so spacious."
Swami Chetanananda


Penny said...

Oh Hildred, so lovely, made me laugh and wonder when it will happen to me, after all I am only 77, quite young, I think, even if bits of the body are falling apart, not quite off, just a bit, well worn out perhaps. Love Penny

Hildred said...

Oh, to be 77 again Penny, - wonderful years. Still able to travel and luckily to have a dear husband around. Take advantage of them and enjoy every day!

Chip Butter said...

And, don't forget to include writing in your list. You do it so well, you know. Day By Day keeps showing up in my little notebooks...a scribble here and there of something you once wrote that struck my fancy. And, you might be pleased to know that you have influenced me in my reading choices, having just finished Loren's Eiseley's The Immense Journey. Thanks, Hildred!

Hildred said...

Thank you Chip. A little encouragement is so appreciated, especially when you feel dry and uninspired..and the winter drags on and on....have. You read Lewis Thomas. He sits next to Loren Eiseley on my bedside shelf. Both authors I first read long years ago, but I find them amazingly relevant even amidst all the new science.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

Oh how you have made me smile!!! I have read that verse before but not for a long time (long enough ago that I thought it was talking about some other people I knew, not middle-aged me).... so NOW, now this will be posted on my refrigerator, although it may be too late for me too.

I too hope that you include blogging on your list. You are such a great role model.