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Hello! I'm a writer from central New York who has bipolar disorder. Among other topics, I write about mental illness and writing. I have short stories published in Lynx Eye, Lost Coast Review, The Outrider Review, Sliver of Stone Magazine, The Mondegreen, The Linnet's Wings, Cobalt Review, Breath & Shadow, The Round Up, Postscripts to Darkness, Masque & Spectacle, and several other journals. I have essays about mental illness in The Ram Boutique and Amygdala Literary Magazine, and an essay in Parts Unbound: Narratives of Mental Illness & Health, a book that was published by Lime Hawk Literary Arts Collective. In December of 2016, The Mondegreen nominated my story "Santa Lucia" for a Pushcart Prize. I've written a novel entitled Purple Loosestrife and a novel entitled Hoping It Might Be So, both of which I am submitting to agents and publishers. I'm working on a novel called Dark and Bright as well as a book called Violets Are Blue: Essays About My Bipolar Life. I have a B.A. in English from SUNY Buffalo and an M.A. in English from SUNY College at Brockport. I hope you enjoy your visit to my blog!

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Aging... Being Scared, Becoming Wiser

The song "100 Years" by Five for Fighting always makes me feel sad. In a single song, it goes through a person's life and emphasizes how fast time goes by. I'm 48 years old, so I most identify with the line, "I'm 45 for a moment / The sea is high and I'm headed into a crisis / Chasing the years of my life." I don't feel that I'm heading into a crisis, or that I've already had a midlife crisis. I've had enough other crises in my life that I never needed a midlife one. But the idea of getting older does scare me at times. I don't like it when people say that time keeps going faster and faster the older you get. I don't want time to go faster. I want to see my son start a career and perhaps get married, and I'd love to be a grandmother, but I don't want to be old.

My father has always said that age is just a state of mind, and my parents are a testament to this. The two of them are respectively on either side of seventy, and they're as fit and youthful and vibrant as can be. They're my role models for aging gracefully, healthfully, and with vitality. They tell me they're happier than they've ever been, that retirement is great and life is fuller and richer than ever.

I hope I'll feel that way when I'm seventy. I hope I'll be like my parents. I strive for this, even at the age of 48. But I still feel afraid. I fear death, for one thing. I love the Woody Allen quote, "It's not that I'm afraid to die, I just don't want to be there when it happens." The fear of the unknown and my shaky and tenuous belief in something more than this life make me wonder what will happen to me, this person whom I call me, after I die. I believe in God as some entity or force, and I think I believe in an afterlife, but I want to be certain. Unfortunately, that's one thing that (as I believe it) we humans don't get to be.

But I take solace in the wisdom I've gained, and continue to gain, as I age. I would not go back to a single time in my life in exchange for where I am now. I love right now. I continue to learn, see, experience, and add to all that's come before this moment in time, and it's exciting and enlightening and heartening in the face of the unknown. I answer questions my son asks me and surprise myself with the answers. Where did they come from? How do I know what I know? By living life. By having experienced a great many things, both good and bad. I honestly wouldn't trade this for anything.

By the way, the picture above is of me at the age of 14. I love the memories, but I love now more.

1 comment:

  1. There are several reasons that ensure that some of us a little aging faster than others.

    ReplyDelete