Old people sometimes mention lessons they wish they had learned long before they did. Many of us have similar lists so I suspect these things are universal - stuff individuals of every generation must learn for themselves and then moan that it took so long.
Just for fun, let's play around with this silly old trope today. I don't mean it to be nostalgic or about regret – two unfortunate states of mind.
Instead, think of it as a little parlor game for elders that could wind up with a bunch of platitudes or, perhaps, reveal a small truth or two.
I'll go first with what likely are only the most obvious and one or two that pertain only to me, although you might have some that are akin:
• That worrying about what other people think is a waste of time. They’re all too busy worrying about their own impression on others to pay attention to me.
• That nothing stays the same. Change is a definition of life.
• That getting old would be so interesting. I would have asked old people more questions.
• How much I like to write and that I'm pretty good at it. I might have made it a career.
• How to integrate physical activity into my daily life so it wouldn’t feel like such a chore.
• That age discrimination would cut short my gainful employment years; I would have saved more money.
• That marriage never suited me. I wouldn’t have bothered with a lot of the dating I did.
• As a corollary to that one: that I would never again love as wholly and deeply as I did (and still do) a certain man I met when I was 36 - half a lifetime ago.
• Most of all - that time is the only thing of value we own.
This isn't near a complete list but given that it took my entire life to learn most of them, it's all I'm willing to admit to today. Here's what I suspect about life lessons: by the time I get a really good handle on how live, it will be time to go.
Now it's your turn.
At The Elder Storytelling Place today, Joyce Orlando Fenner: A Compromising Position