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Growing Old With Joy

Story ID:8906
Written by:Suzana Margaret Megles (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Musings, Essays and Such
Location:Lakewood Ohio USA
Year:2013
Person:Suzana
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My title may jolt some people - growing old with joy, but
I know that there are people out there just like me too.
Would I want to be young again? Hardly. I can't say I
always worked hard to earn these grey hairs- but hard
enough to not want to relive those days again. And yes,
I'm sure there are people like me too who feel going
around once is quite enough, thank you.

What prompted this musing on growing old? Perhaps two things.
Today is the anniversary of my immigrant mother's birth.
She would have been 113 years old today. She was born in
1900 and made it to age 71. She was a much harder worker
than myself, and I am always grateful to her for teaching
me to love God and His mother. I believe she is in heaven
because she certainly was a good person. This joy I am
experiencing today may well be a small gift from her.

And the second reason had me going to my Favorites because
I was checking the baseball standings to see how our Cleveland
Indians were doing. After a rocky start, they share first
place in the Central Division with the Tigers. Now staying
there will be the real challenge.

Everybody who has a baseball franchise loves their respective
teams, and I am no different. I grew to love baseball from
my immigrant father who lured me into listening to the baseball
games on the radio with him. I can still hear the crack of the
bat on a ball that left our grand old stadium which is now no
more.

A lot of Greater Clevelanders like the new ball park, and I
guess it is better for the players, but I love old things.
I am always sad to see the wrecking ball come out. If I had
my way -buildings, houses, and sports stadiums would only be
demolished when they posed a risk to life. Can you imagine such
a world as mine? Most could not.

So while checking the baseball standings on my Favorites, I
frowned when I saw the long list of them. I know that I had
better start trying to whittle them down.

My eyes almost immediately fell on "Growing Old with Dogs."
Clicking it, I read these beautiful thoughts from an unknown
female author.

There was beautiful background music to accompany these loving,
heartfelt thoughts. I decided then that it was something that
I should share because I'm sure there are both men and women
who feel the same way as this author -though many of us could
not so beautifully express our sentiments as she has. I first
read it in 2006.

It also brought to mind the very loving memory of the Minnesota
man who carried in his arms his elderly, arthritic dog for a
frequent "swim" in Lake Superior. The picture is so tender and
loving. I can easily conjure it up in my mind's eye and see the
peaceful and serene face of his sweet dog who felt so loved and
secure in his friend's strong arms as the healing waters lapped
around his tired old body.

And now the beautiful poem: "GROWING OLD WITH DOGS"

When I am old...
I will wear soft gray sweatshirts...
and a bandana over my silver hair....
and I will spend my social security checks on wine and my dogs.

I will sit in my house on my well-worn chair
and listen to my dogs' breathing.
I will sneak out in the middle of a warm summer night
and take my dogs for a run, if my old bones will allow...

When people come to call, I will smile
and nod as I show them my dogs...
and talk of them and about them...
...the ones so beloved of the past
and the ones so beloved of today...

I will still work hard cleaning after them,
mopping and feeding them and
whispering their names in a soft loving way.

I will wear the gleaming sweat on my throat,
like a jewel and I will be an embarrassment to all...
especially my family...
who have not yet found the peace in being free
to have dogs as your best friends....

These friends who always wait, at any hour, for your footfall...
and eagerly jump to their feet out of a sound sleep,
to greet you as if you are a God.

With warm eyes full of adoring love and hope
that you will always stay,
I'll hug their big strong necks...
I'll kiss their dear sweet heads...
and whisper in their very special company...

l look in the Mirror...and see I am getting old...
this is the kind of person I am...and have always been.
Loving dogs is easy,
they are part of me.

Please accept me for who I am.
My dogs appreciate my presence in their lives...
they love my presence in their lives....(Better - and I
appreciate theirs in mine.)
When I am old this will be important to me...
you will understand when you are old...
if your have dogs to love too.

Author Unknown