Kenwood Pools

These ARE The Golden Years!

September 28, 2012 1:07 pm0 commentsViews: 33
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Little Marilyn at 3 years old just found out she isn’t old enough to do something.

Little Marilyn at 3 years old just found out she isn’t old enough to do something.

Too often these days I hear nothing but complaints from many of my fellow senior citizens who probably have every good reason to complain. Our health may be declining—which, after all, is inevitable—and our retirement savings seem to be going to pot, just like our bodies.

I think it’s time to take a positive look at all the good things about being on the other side of 70. (By the way, I’m a widow who will be 76 years old this December). Just think of all the freedom that comes with retirement. Those days that we so longed for when we wouldn’t need to go to work anymore have arrived!

There’s more TIME for just about everything….more time to spend with family, go back to school, take up a new or old hobby, socialize, or simply to explore the wonders of nature. The possibilities are endless. I’m busier (and happily so) than I ever recall being during my working years. My own career went in two directions; teaching pre-school children for 16 years and assisting people in finding jobs for another 16 years, 4 of which included owning my own employment agency.

Finally you’ll be able to finish that wonderful book that’s been gathering dust for so long or to start a new one from your local library. (Most libraries offer all kinds of books in large print). Talk about keeping your mind fresh! We’ve all heard about the brain exercise we get from doing crossword puzzles, but you might think about doing the more difficult one that appears in most Sunday papers to give your brain an even better workout.

This is a wonderful time to let your creativity flourish. Have you always enjoyed drawing, painting, or sculpting since you were a young child but just “haven’t had the time” in recent years? Now you do! Or what about using long-forgotten writing skills in telling your grandchildren what life was like when you were growing up.

Perhaps you have some computer skills that you could use to research your family history. (Computers are available at all the local libraries. All you may need to do is reserve one in advance by calling the library). Best of all, this is free; you don’t even need to own a computer. Free or almost free beginner computer classes for seniors are often offered at Pennsbury High School or at your local senior center. Computers can also be a lot of fun to play all kinds of games such as solitaire, TV quiz shows, Scrabble, or you can even do jigsaw puzzles (jigzone.com).

Senior centers provide numerous opportunities for socializing, enjoying a communal lunch, exercise programs, all kinds of activities, trips, competitions, games, seminars, speakers plus much more. And some fun, too! Yearly membership fees are minimal. Why not take a friend with you so that you both may expand your horizons?

There are great opportunities to give back to your community now that you have some extra time. By just devoting about 2 hours a week delivering Meals on Wheels to local shut-ins, you can bring so much more than nourishment to these deserving senior citizens. I delivered meals for Falls Township Senior Center for about 4 years, finding that the recipients often needed the companionship as much as the food.

Volunteers are needed in so many parts of our community. If you do become a volunteer, I’m sure that you’ll find the rewards are immeasurable. Just start making a few calls to hospitals, nursing homes, schools or libraries, to name a few, and see how quickly you’ll find “just the right place” where your help would be appreciated.

You might just find that if you keep your mind open, you’ll find all kinds of new interests, ideas and capabilities. Not only that, you undoubtedly will find new friends. There won’t be time to be lonely.

As I have grown older, like many other people, I have found that time is one of the most precious commodities we have and we should use it wisely. There is still time to find great joy and happiness in these, our Golden Years!

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