29 September, 2017

A question of ageing

I did it again today: I had to do maths to figure out which number in my 40s belongs to me right now! This is something that younger people find hard to believe, but it does happen. Yes, I'm middle aged now! No denying that.
So young! In my mid-20s.

I was talking to a married friend recently who is also in her 40s, but a couple of years behind me. She told me that she'd been troubled on her birthday this year. She raised a question I hadn't thought specifically about before: 
How should we approach our mid-life in a godly way? What are good thought patterns in the face of the realisation that our bodies are ageing (though by no means old) and that we are no longer young?
There is a grief inherent, even in your 40s, about not being young anymore and the relentlessness of ageing.

Of course I've thought about the fact that I'm not young anymore. But when married women talk about this stage of life, we tend to talk about—grief about not having young children anymore, grief at children moving out of home, learning to cope with couple-dom again, coping with young children even though you are older, menopause, ageing parents, busyness of life, the physical changes that come, mentoring/coaching younger women, childless-ness, mid-life crisis, raising teenagers, etc.

But not about how to think about ageing, or how to approach it in a godly way.

I did some quick online searching and there's stuff about the above topics too, but I struggled to find anything (quickly) on this topic.

I have some half-formed thoughts, but I know that there are quite a few of you out there who read this who are a similar age, or older. And so I'm putting this out there for you to contribute your thoughts. Have you got a good book recommendation? What has helped you as you've moved into your 40s or 50s? What advice can you give?

And please, I know that women who are older than us will be tempted to say, "But you aren't old..." Please don't. We know we aren't as old as you. We're just trying to make sense of where we are and that where you are, we will be some day soon.

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