One of the really fun activities I have been doing since moving to Florida has been taking a water aerobics class three times a week. It is in the morning down the street ,at one of the satellite pools in my housing complex. I get up early and walk a few blocks joyfully anticipating another fun time with the “ladies”. The class ranges from ten to twenty women who’s median age is 80! They are my inspiration. Driving their cars or golf carts from their homes in their bathing suits full of energy at 9am three times a week. They always honk at me walking to the class asking if I want a ride. Sometimes I jump into their car or cart just to get to know them better and hear their stories! The woman who kind of runs the class is Muriel. Actually she brings Cd’s and a boom box to every class with exercise instructions. The background music ranges from Michael Jackson to Beethoven. She is 88 and from Brooklyn originally.She is currently taking a writing class and finishing college. When she found out I was writing a book we became fast friends. I also discovered she had been in a Hebrew class with my mother. We were instantly connected! She has shared with me some of her writing. Muriel says she wants to document her life so her grandchildren know how life was for her growing up in Brooklyn from 1922 on. I have read many of her stories of Boynton Beach and trips to Coney Island. They are wonderful and give me a real picture of a Brooklyn childhood in the 20″s.
Last Thursday during the class one of the 80 something year old women was discussing the trip to Costa Rica she was about to go on. Gladys is her name , loves to para sail and scuba dive and was looking forward to doing both. I said you would love my story about parachuting. Her reply “I wanted to parachute but my husband won’t let me.” I love these women! It never fails, each class another one of the ladies shares about a class they are taking or and adventure they are going on. Monday one of the woman approached me to go shopping, another had been a teacher and asked me about writing which she too felt she wanted to begin, and another just signed up for jdate a jewish dating service! How inspiring to be in your 80′s exercise three times a week in a class that believe me is not easy and be so alive, passionate, and fit! They all look wonderful. I think 80 is the new 60!
My parents were also a great inspiration to me about age. They were playing golf well in their eighties, bridge, taking classes, trips, tennis, and more! They both lived fully until they died. My grandfather lived to be 104. He went kicking and screaming into a nursing home at 100. Bribing the nurses to get out and play the stock market and flirt with women in Florida. I come from a long line of people who defy age. So for me these women are just a wonderful reminder that life is to be lived to the fullest. That age is just a conversation. I feel at least 15 years younger then my age. Many say I look younger too. I feel that comes from loving life, enjoying each day, and practicing Self Love!! I suggest you examine your ideas and beliefs around aging. Look around at those in their 80′s and beyond. Hear their stories and imagine what you can create for yourself at any age. What do you have a passion for? Discover how you can stay vibrant and alive. This life is such and opportunity. Enjoy each breath!