Yet, I am still amazed that so many years have slipped by, so many months torn off so many calendars, as I was raising a daughter and working hard, long hours to do it, and then building my own business, while trying desperately to publish (if anyone wants a great coffee table book on the bridges of Florida, I happen to have the concept for such a thing).
I'm always looking for the lessons in life and I've learned a ton of those, too. Without becoming maudlin, let's just say that the primary lesson is that I was wrong to consider myself OLD based on a number. That won't eliminate the occasional shock as I come upon a mirror unexpectedly and wonder, "Who IS that person" before grasping that it's really me...the 16 year old me merely covered in a different exterior. I do admit that my body, the physical shell, isn't quite as peppy these days, but my mind is certainly not a sucker for the number of years I've inhabited that shell.
So, to all of you younger people reading this: Get ready. Know that it will happen to you, too. (Yes, it will...stop shaking your heads.) But also know that it isn't what you think it will be. You simply can't imagine it now. That's part of the human learning curve that I have come to know and respect. We each think WE will somehow avoid [getting old, being pulled over after just a few drinks, contracting a life-threatening illness, etc], but the things that happen to people in general generally do happen to US.
And maybe, by understanding this before it happens, we all can manuever the front lines of maturity with a bit more common sense and dignity.
Mistakes are part of the dues one pays for a full life. ~Sophia Loren