I feel old in my forties. Don’t get me wrong, I am not depressed, burned-out or feeling defeated. Neither am I sick or dying. On the contrary, I feel more alive and blessed now. There is sense of purpose and meaning into my life. These days, I am seeing how good the Lord has been and how loved I am. Read and you will understand what I mean.
I feel old, in fact I am already thinking of what I want to be written in my tomb stone. I want my epitaph to be “a loving wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend and teacher”. I don’t know if it captures my essence, it is so hard to put in words what I want to be. On second thought, I don’t want to be remembered as loving; rather I want them to remember the feeling of being loved. Perhaps it is better to say that here lays someone who made me feel loved…
I feel old because I am now semiretired. I have learned that the most important thing in life does not come with a title or with a price tag. Life is too short to live in a rat race, only to realize in the end that you overlooked your life. Now I am trying to live a life focused on myself and my family. I recognized that there is nothing as valuable as living a life filled with wonderful memories. So, I am slowing down to get pregnant again. I am giving myself as much time as my reproductive organ may permit, but I will embrace whatever God is giving me. In the same way, my parents are in their mid-seventies and I am giving myself as much time as possible to spend with them.
I feel old because now I seek more of self-fulfilment than self-gratification. I feel that I have found my worth in teaching. Teaching enables me to share my knowledge, my values and hopes. It enables me to contribute to nation building as I mould minds and try to inspire souls. It is not as lucrative as working for the industry, but it is more heart filling. There is joy in seeing the children learn and achieve. I know that this is my vocation and I intend to retire in this profession.
I feel old because I am living on my retirement fund already. More than two decades ago, I started saving for my retirement. Now that I am not fully employed and studying, I am using this fund. Since this is my hard earned money, I try not to spend on unnecessary things or invest in high risk investments. If others are trying to live within their income, I am trying to spend less and make my fund grow at least enough to preserve its purchasing power. Preserving the value of my funds is also my way of not adding burden on my family.
I feel old because my travel goal is a pilgrimage. I want to gift myself a pilgrimage to the Holy Land on my 50th birthday. I want to touch the spot where Jesus was born. I want to experience being baptized at Jordan River. I want to renew our marriage vows at Canaan. I am praying for it and looking at my investments. Somewhere I believe that God will provide the needed funds.