Archives for posts with tag: seventy

I think I’m ready, or at least as ready as one can be for an adventure into the unknown.

I’ve done my research. I’ve read May Sarton’s contemplative journal At Seventy and Judith Viorst’s lively book of poems I’m Too Young to Be Seventy and other Delusions. A couple of Viorst’s points: You want time to slow down? Try waiting for the results of a biopsy! Keep trying because the world would be a lot worse if we don’t.

I’ve read about the physical changes of aging: faces becoming more asymmetrical, eye sockets get wider, ears grow longer and wider, nose droops, rib cage rounds, feet get wider, etc. In general gravity rules!

I’ve enjoyed novels about aging characters like The Sweet By and By by Todd Johnson and Our Souls at Night by Kent Haruf. The characters are still kicking and still finding joy in doing so.

Then there are the nonfiction guides. Current favorites are On the Brink of Everything by Parker Palmer and Women Rowing North by Mary Pipher. Their emphasis on saying “enough” and “no” to even good projects is freeing. Then one can concentrate on planting seeds from your tree, not somebody else’s. As Palmer says, “Today you’re the peacock; tomorrow the feather duster”.

My mail is starting to feature AARP, hearing aids and funeral planning seminars.

I’ve got some projects planned:

  • Finish reading the Bible (last time I started I got stuck in Leviticus)
  • Attack the tsunami of Braille magazines in my living room. I must skim them before recycling them.
  • Turn my blogs into a book so I’ll leave a well-marked trail of one woman’s occupying aging process.

Celebrate the occasion as much as possible:

  • Schedule lunches, dinners and bridge playing galore
  • Read some of the poems my friends sent me at a poetry reading at a local nursing home
  • Survived an interview for a local television station for Women’s History month (I didn’t know seventy was that historic!): https://www.weau.com/video?vid=507544612
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This year in April I turn seventy! Would you be part of the celebration?  Would you email me a poem or song lyrics that you like and/or you think fits me by March 15?  I’ll put them in braille and then do a reading during poetry month (April) in an assisted living or nursing home.

I’ve been taking an informal survey and have found one friend who will celebrate seventy by drinking a huge Moscow mule and another who is planning a weekend getaway with kids and grandkids.

In case you’re curious why I’m doing this crazy thing, here’s my story: There are only a few books of poetry in Braille for a blind person to buy and treasure. I helped National Braille Press produce one 100 Poems to Lift Your Spirits. I’ve also helped put a Braille printer at the local public library. When I gather the poems and lyrics from this solicitation, I’ll put them on a thumb drive and take it to the library for them to run off in Braille.

If this project gives you nightmares of English class, feel free to delete the request or reconnect with that poetry-loving kid who lived in you before that English class. Haiku, limericks, song lyrics and hymns all qualify.

As I look back in gratitude and forward in anticipation, I thank you for your part in my life. I can hardly wait to read what you send! Email: schneiks@uwec.edu (in the body of the email or as an attachment)

Kathie