Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

February 2, 2013

Day: Those ‘golden years’

By Ray Day
Guest columnist

— As we grow older and sometimes wiser, we find things we did not know about or even cared to learn about. We find those “golden years” which we have looked forward to are really not that great.

With them comes illness, being tired a lot, not wanting to get out of bed sometimes, and putting on a few extra pounds. We find out those clothes we thought we would use the rest of our lives have to be replaced.

Your eating habits change, too, because of losing your teeth and not being able to afford new dentures, along with the reflux you get from certain foods.

As for friends, only the true ones will have the gumption to tell you that you stink and could use a bath. The ones who laugh and make fun of you are not true friends and, really, you can do without them.

And the money you have been saving so that you can live close to the way you did in the early years seems to not be enough for you. You go out to find a job, and you are told there just isn’t too much available in the job field.

Then there are the young ones who always say, “Grandpa, it really wasn’t like that, was it?” Kids just don’t want to believe we and those before us actually had to work for what we received. In today’s world, there are many young folk, along with an alarming number of folks my age, who think the hand should be out to receive and not to work with.

So as we enter the golden years, are we better or worse off? We should be, because no more do you have to rise at the early hours of the day, nor do you have to stay with a certain task for eight hours like it was in earlier times. No more packing a lunch to eat at a time set forth by your boss, and then find out that some things are not in the bag. No more breathing the air that is full of smoke.

Oh wait, there are still those out there who are filling our air with their smoking. So, as we grow older, we still have those things that linger on and play a drastic happening to our bodies and those we love.

When we really get down to some heavy thought, we have not changed things that much. Our golden years will still be ones we love, because it is what we have waiting for all those working years. We take it one day at a time, and we enjoy our lives the same.

As we grow older in years, we wonder what we could have done differently and, really, what we did was live our lives, supported our families and kept the bills paid. Maybe what we have to show for it is what it should be.

We took life and we lived it. We treasure all the memories that came with those years and, darn it, if that wasn’t enough, then go sit in the corner and feel the closeness of the two walls around you. Get out of that corner and enjoy the time you have left, because it can be the best time of all.

We are weak, but we are strong in the thoughts that life was given to us to enjoy and not to let it go by way of thoughts of despair. One day at a time, with the thought at the end of the day, that we made the most of it. Love life to the highest, and let God bless.

Ray “Uncle Ray” Day is a weekly contributor to the Kokomo Tribune. Contact him at uncleray@earthlink.net.