My father’s adventures continue. Since moving to Clermont, he has gone river tubing, visited an elephant sanctuary where he almost rode on top of one until lightening became a threat, and recently, in honor of Veteran’s Day, he got to take a ride in a WWII biplane. Hence the picture with goggles. Completely open air, Dad and a few others from his retirement community enjoyed the opportunity of a lifetime. In addition to the 20-30 minute ride, each also received an autographed hat (by the pilot) thanking them for their service. (And if the Vet was a former pilot, then they were given the opportunity to actually fly the aircraft!)
I continue to watch my Dad try new things and enjoy great adventures. It brings joy to my heart and certainly puts a smile on my face. And he’s 90!
How many of us in our 50s, 60s, or 70s grow weary by day’s end or complain about aches and pains stating they keep us from certain activities? How many of us use our older age to say we can’t or we won’t? We work hard all our lives, finally earn our retirement and then what? Do we sit around wondering where time has gone and lamenting our bodies failing us? Do we rest on the notion that we’ve put in our time and now we get to rest and do nothing?
Shame on us. This is our Second Act. Now we actually have the time to try some fascinating adventures, learn new things, take up a hobby, visit people, volunteer somewhere, or travel.
My dad continues to be a great example. After his retirement at age 59, he took courses in tax prep and since that time has volunteered as an AARP tax preparer…every single year. Many times he would head up a region and put his leadership skills to work.
He continued to sing in the church choir for years, only relinquishing that role a few years ago.
And it was only last December when my mother became very, very sick that he resigned from the condo board where he served in many capacities since 1999.
Oh, and did I mention he was on the planning and zoning board for his town? In fact, until his accident in April, he had been voted in as President for the coming year.
So I’m thinking ahead to 2017. I’m going to set goals and dare to dream. No more self-limiting thoughts. Instead, I’ll take courage and think I can, I should, and I will. With my dad as my example, I’ll forge ahead, seeking to find where God wants me to be involved. I’ll look for opportunities to serve others. And I’ll continue to learn…crocheting and a new language are first to come to mind.
“But the godly will flourish like palm trees and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon. For they are transplanted to the Lord’s own house. They flourish in the courts of our God. Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green.” (Psalm 92:12-14 NLT)