Guess what? I’m officially old. A few months ago I had a birthday that is associated with a large number. I won’t tell you which number, because I do have trouble saying it out loud, and I admit it’s because of vanity, and also the fear that I’ll now be dismissed as a dotty, irrelevant old woman, but there it is. Can we just move on?
As a woman my age, it’s not that this number surprised me. It’s been steadily creeping up on me, like a stalker in the darkness. I heard its footsteps getting louder, and the pursuit getting faster, and now here it is, in all of its starkness and clarity. Even though it’s been true for quite awhile that there is more of my life behind me than ahead of me, being officially old changes a few things. I’m constantly ambushed by this thought: Help! I’m running out of time!
Someday is here in a way that it wasn’t at my last birthday before The Big One. A new decade has begun. Inside, I still feel like a summer girl, but the new page on the calendar of my life declares it is autumn. So this could go either of two ways – sobering or exciting. I want to choose exciting, but let’s deal with sobering first.
The mountain of the books I want to read, the trips I’ve dreamed of taking, the movies I haven’t seen, the people I haven’t gotten to know, the skills I still haven’t learned, the spiritual attributes I have not yet acquired, are jumping up and down demanding my attention and reminding me that I’d better get cracking. Someday won’t last forever.
Thinking about major purchases takes on new shades of meaning. The couch and loveseat I committed to sixteen years ago because I loved and adored it, now seem stale and out of style. Excuse me if this is morbid, but I realized the other day that if I buy a new set, it may very well be the last one I ever buy. Yikes! But then, no matter how young or old you are, whenever you buy something, it could very well be the last time you ever buy it, because nobody is guaranteed even one more day of life. So there. See how we old people comfort ourselves?
I’ll have to accept that, sadly, there won’t be time to try the piles of recipes I’ve ripped out of magazines. I won’t get to make all those clever projects on Pinterest. And I’ve come to terms with the cruel fact that I will never, ever, master the art of parallel parking.
On to the exciting aspects of this new decade. Waiting for someday gives you feelings of delightful anticipation, like a five-year-old waiting and waiting for Christmas. Oh, the fantastic, amazing things you will do when someday arrives! It’s time to stop procrastinating and get going on some things I’ve been waiting to do. So I’ve made a volunteer commitment to an organization I believe does important work. I’m discovering new things about prayer. I’ve pledged myself to having serious fun. I can’t imagine that I will ever be bored, because I have a long, long list of stuff I’ve been saving for someday
The most delightful thing about living my someday to the fullest, is that when it’s over, it won’t really be over. The someday I’m living now is preparation for heaven, the grand-daddy of all somedays. So I want to inhale deeply of listening to God’s voice, giving him my best, and savoring all the good things and precious people in my life.
Help! I’m running out of time. But I have time enough in this present, earthly someday to do what God has for me. “So teach us to count our days,” says the Psalmist, “so that we will become wise.”