“NO SURPRISES HERE (A Comforting Embrace of an Approaching End)” by Stephen G. Waters
A Comforting Embrace of an Approaching End
by Stephen G. Waters
Suddenly, that was me, a part of the Senior Citizen Group, or whatever the gang of elders is called.
For years my satisfaction had been the postponement of the reality that there was to be an end to my days. With an alarming suddenness, there would be no further avoiding the limit to my days.
Of course, I well know I am among the older, but there wasn’t that feeling of difference, which is now so strong. It’s the sudden awareness that strike the consciousness.
The pictures on the television show happy people having all sorts of fun. I don’t want to participate in any of those things anymore. Some folks are off to a concert; I don’t want to go and am happy to stay home. The sounds of today’s music are repellent, and so are the various artists’ expressions that are introduced to us. It’s the generational gap; it’s the senior group preference. It’s just that it came so suddenly for me.
My dad had lived to 90 years of age, and we know of many friends and acquaintances leading productive lives in their 90s. Why not me? I’m only 84. I am thoroughly enjoying living with my dear wife, Jane. Making music, enjoying a spectacular Red Sox season, getting to the movies, perhaps a short trip here or there -even finding enjoyment as a part of the seniors group -this is contentment to be savored.
The reality of one’s chronology and now, myelofibrosis migrating to leukemia with “incurable” but “manageable” identifying descriptors brings one up short. Now I look more carefully at the blessings of life, most specifically the love and support of family and friends.
And, yes, that’s me with a wobble down the aisle, not a sign of one-too-many. And, yes, that’s me snoozing during a sermon.
Suddenly, I know there will be an end and visualizing the world without me in it is the challenge of belonging to the seniors group. On the other side, there is a comforting safety that comes from acceptance of those things we always enjoyed with these folks. We can enjoy the old music and appreciate the pictures -reminiscing about those good old days.
Belonging to the senior group may well be some of the best years yet.
Stephen G. Waters died on April 5, 2019