I’m in Memphis, my home town, for a friend Mahaffey’s 100th birthday. Mahaffey is mentally sharp, lives independently, still drives, has an active social life, checks on her neighbors, makes and exhibits her art, and seems as physically fit as someone in her 70s or 80s. I’m sure she could tell me something about what aging has done to her body and mind, but I have never heard her talk about aging in a negative way or complain about pains or problems.
As I celebrated her milestone this week, I was in awe of two things. One, her making it to 100 without major disease or dementia. And two, the attitude she sports that makes me think it’s been easy when, of course, it hasn’t.
You see, my birthday is the same as Mahaffey’s; I’m less than half her age. And you can bet I’ve already had some complaints about my mind and body aging. Maybe I’m still so relatively new to it that I’m in the early, cranky stage. But this week, with Mahaffey’s example, I came away thinking I’d like to bring that grace to my next five decades.