Growing Old



I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly. As I’ve aged, I’ve become kinder to myself, and less critical of myself. I’ve become my own friend. I don’t chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn’t need, but looks so avant-garde on my patio. I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.

I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon? I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60’s & 70’s, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love ….. I will.

I will walk the beach in a swimsuit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set. They, too, will get old.

I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things.

Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody’s beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.

I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.

As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don’t question myself anymore. I’ve even earned the right to be wrong.

So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be.

And I shall eat dessert every single day (if I feel like it).

[forwarded by Steve Sanderson]


Become richer instantly…desire less.


Yeah, you can send this Funny to anybody you want. And, if you’re REAL nice, you’ll tell them where you got it!”

About russtowne

My wife and I have been married since 1979. We have 3 adult children and 4 young grandsons. I manage a wealth management firm I founded in 2003. My Beloved is a Special Education teacher for Kindergartners and First Graders. I'm a published author of 23 books in a variety of genres for grownups and children. In addition to my family, friends, investing, and writing, my passions include reading, watching classic movies, experiencing waves crashing on rocky shores, hiking in ancient redwood forests, and enjoying our small redwood grove and fern garden.
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27 Responses to Growing Old

  1. Christine says:

    OMGosh! It is like you are reading my mind! I Love this post and will reblog because it is awesome! Thank you!
    Peace and Love~ Christine

  2. Andrea Kelly says:

    Such a great lesson!

  3. Love it!! Just one question: Do you have your mother’s thighs? 😉

    • russtowne says:

      LOL! I don’t look at my mother’s thighs. Do sons look at their mother’s thighs where you come from Diana? ;-D!


      • russtowne says:

        I meant to say, “LOL! I don’t look at my mother’s thighs, so I don’t know. Do sons look at their mother’s thighs where you come from Diana? ;-D!


      • LOL I don’t know, I’ve never been a son….I was trying to be funny…and you laughed so that’s good right?

        • russtowne says:

          Yeah actually WERE being funny. I knew what you meant (and enjoye th joke) and decided to twist the joke a little, trusting in our friendship and your sense of humor that you’d appreciate the twist.

          Yup, it’s all good!


  4. judysp says:

    Great post Russ, I agree with all of that. As long as you have your health and the love of friends and family , growing old isn’t so bad. 🙂

    • russtowne says:

      Hi, Judy. I agree! And as the old joke goes, growing old sure beats the alternative!

      As I just re-read the phrase “growing old” I realized that if one places the emphasis on “growing” then how old one is barely matters!


  5. I am not old either but have also found that as I age I have learnt to like myself so much more and when I look at photos of myself when I was younger I think I use to think I was fat…………….and look at me know I was like 20-30 kilos lighter……………….lol

  6. I’m learning to become my own best friend. I may be learning it a little later than I should, but my age tells me its all ok. Loved this post 🙂

  7. Gina's Professions for PEACE says:

    Another wonderful and wise post Russ! Thanks for sharing the light of your being with us all.
    Hugs, Gina

  8. shianwrites says:

    Great place to be Russ! Good for you! Not quite there, but I’m looking forward to it.

    • russtowne says:

      Hi, Shian. Good to hear from you. If the “not quite there yet” refers to aging. My advice to you is that there is no need to rush it! ;-D! Berng young has many advantages too!

      Come to think of it though, a fairly young person recently said to me: “Admit it, you’d love to be young again!” I thought about it and honestly answered that I wouldn’t want to be young again. Each age has it’s challenges, and some of my hardest challenges were when I was young, such as enduring 16 years of my life sitting in classrooms trying not to fall asleep and jumping through memorization hoops that someone else deemed important for me, puppy love, broken hearts, etc. No, thank you very much but I like me best right now, and right where I am, graying hair and all!


      • shianwrites says:

        Haha! I totally understand… I meant, not quite as comfortable with myself. You rock.

        • russtowne says:

          I thought you might have, but decided to go another way with it and have some fun!

          It is perfectly normal to not be quite comfortable with oneself. I certainly have often felt that way. Over time I noticed that the more I followed my passions and the more I allowed myself to just be there for others the more I felt comfortable with myself. I think those were the times I felt most in touch with my spirit and my heart and everything felt so right and so natural. Or maybe I was just so focused on doing what I loved and what truly mattered to me that I no longer thought about or even cared what anyone–including myself!–thought of me!


  9. I think that is so true to how we believe now that we are in our ‘twilight’ years’. We worry less about what others think and do what we want more. It is really freeing…Thanks for posting it..Diane

  10. Awesome post Russ! Some may view it as being careless bordering negligent. I see it as being carefree and it truly is so liberating! 🙂

    • russtowne says:

      Thank you, Nadine. I agree. What some would call “careless” I too prefer to experience as “carefree”. I like to think that old people who engage in the latter approach have a lot less stress, worry, regret, and fear, and each of those things have a deleterious effect on one’s body too–perhaps even enough to fully compensate for some of the behaviors that others would call careless.


  11. Dr Bill says:

    Wonderful post Russ. You are turning aging into “saging” Thanks for posting, Bill

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