As they inch closer to their 30th birthday, I often hear my friends say they’re feeling “old”. My birthday is drawing closer, and I’ll be honest, 28 sounds so much older and less adventurous than 27 does. It’s true, in today’s society, youth is perceived as golden and being old…well, that’s like a death sentence. I know it’s not really true but when everyone else believes that aging sucks, well, its hard not to believe it too. So for those of you out there who just can’t bear getting one year older, here some reasons why I believe aging is not so bad after all.
1. Senior Citizen Discounts – Let’s first be real. Who doesn’t like getting a discount? Senior citizens happen to get some of the best discounts around and I think these are reminders that getting older comes with some great perks. One of the discounts that I am looking forward to (in years to come) is from the National Parks Service (NPS). The NPS provides an annual parks pass allowing entry into national parks for $80/year. If you’re over 62, you pay $10 but not for an annual pass, but for a LIFETIME pass. Let’s visit some parks Grandpa right??!?! (Check it out at http://www.nps.gov/fees_passes.htm). Other great deals exist at hotels, restaurants, and stores.
2. You Get to Be Yourself – When you’re young, you’ve got something prove and life can be tough because there are often times when you do need to impress the boss, the prospective spouse, your peers, and more. It can be so stressful. But imagine, once you’re 75, 80, 92, I think you’re allowed to truly be yourself. One thing I’ve learned and I love about being with seniors is that they are genuine. Why? My reasoning is that by that age, you are comfortable in your own skin and you can be who are you really are. How refreshing huh?
3. Reaping What You Sow – The 20’s, in my opinion, are probably the toughest time in life, but when you reach your later years, you truly get to reap what you sow. From 20-30, you make a lot of decisions that affect the rest of your life. What will you become careerwise? Who will you spend the rest of your life with? Where do you want to live? What stressful and tough decisions to make! But fast forward a few decades and you come to the point where you get to see the fruit of your hard work. When do people get into the Hall of Fame? When do people get to enjoy grandkids? When does retirement begin? Yes, later in life, and while you will have wrinkles and maybe white hair, think about the satisfaction you will get from seeing the results of your hard work.
So there you go, enjoy your life now, but look forward to what life will bring because there is a lot more to look forward to, even in the last third of your life.