Mom had her 80th birthday a month ago. We had a very nice party for her, and even though she is an anti-social creature, she enjoyed the company and the attention.
I, being the embarrassingly rotten daughter I am, called her last night (for the first time since her party....).
Mom has reached a milestone. Two months ago, she talked about being an old lady with just a hint of sadness and dismay. Since her birthday, she sounds proud. Impressed with herself at having achieved 80 years.
It is remarkable that she has achieved these 80 years in good overall health and with a such a sound mind. Between the starving time when the Nazis occupied Holland, her native country, to the difficult time she had bringing forth the four of us, to tuberculosis and I don't know what else..... it's impressive that she's here today and doing very well. She smokes. (SHAME ON YOU MOM!!!) No exercise. Her diet...well, this is starting to sound like a lecture, so I'll lay off. All in all, it is a wonder that she is so well.
There is something about the way she is embracing her age that I really like. She laughs. She jokes about it. She holds her head high. Her mom was like that, too, and so is her older sister. I like it that the women in my family do not become crabby, cranky old whiners. Even at 80, and beyond, they embrace each day with a joyful spirit and a twinkle of humor in their eyes. My mom takes that twinkle of humor to the next level and all the way to mischief. But she's always been that way.
I don't know if the attitude is what helps the women in my family be so "with it" into their golden years. Maybe it's that being "with it" lets you stay cheerful? No. I think it's the other way around.