"Who wants to live forever?"
"Who wants to live forever?"
An interesting question posed by Queen.
Written in 1986 by Brian May for the film Highlander, and recorded by Queen with Freddie Mercury singing lead vocals.
The Highlander, Connor McLeod, had to endure the aging and subsequent death of his beloved wife, Heather, because he himself was immortal.
The song became a sort of private anthem for Mercury due to his battle with AIDS.
Today it’s the fifth most requested song at funerals.
Who DOES want to live forever?
Wouldn’t it be remarkable to see the advancements in our world through science if we lived indefinitely?
To watch our children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren grow and mature.
To see illnesses cured and the environment healed.
Yes, and no.
If no one died it would certainly be a very crowded planet.
And at what age would we stop aging? In our 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, 80’s?
An entire industry - the anti- aging industry - would be wiped out.
Perhaps even the vitamin and supplement industry.
What about hospitals, physicians and medical researchers?
No need for them if we are immortal.
BUT could we still get sick or injured and would we be relegated to live sick and injured forever?
Trust me, I’ve spent a bit of time thinking about this.
On the other hand, what if we were able to live long, healthy, extended lives, into our 100’s? Then one day the body just gives out or we decide we're done. We feel complete.
We have accomplished goals, made contributions to the planet and our community and family.
We have lived life fully and with gusto.
We haven't taken our time, our health, our planet or the people around us for granted.
What if we knew exactly what we have and used that time wisely? We taught each other the value of a life well lived. A life that is not simply ego-centric, ethno-centric or money-centric.
Life lived without fear of judgment or ridicule.
We didn't harm ourselves, or harm others. We didn't get our good off of the backs of others.
What if exercise is a pleasure and done to keep the body healthy and happy. It’s a big part of what we naturally do and not what we HAVE TO do. We incorporate it into our lives effortlessly.
The planet is respected and protected because we know it has to sustain us for the long haul.
Alternatives to plastics and fossil fuels are the norm, and not the exception, to keep us and our world thriving.
Imagine how many diseases this behavior would eradicate.
Farmers would farm organically and use natural means to prevent pests. We wouldn’t be putting pesticides in our bodies, water and air, therefore, preventing cancers, and lung, heart and digestive diseases.
We could live longer and do more.
Build more schools, homes, wells, and sanitary disposal methods.
Clean drinking water for all.
The few would not need to hoard or amass untold wealth because simple pleasures would be easily attainable, respected AND appreciated.
If you knew you were going to live for 100 years or more would you want to live with hate, filth, and corruption KNOWING it was a long haul and you would have to endure those conditions for centuries?
Then WHY do we do it now knowing our lives are relatively short?
Don’t we know that aging is a precious gift and not everyone around us will have the luxury of aging?
Instead of being so nonchalant about our lives, bodies, minds and environment we need to nurture ourselves to have the best life possible, for as long as possible.
It reminds me of the song by Blondie: “Die Young, Stay Pretty.”
You CAN live long, live healthily and, yes, stay pretty, if that is important to you. (Remember beauty is in the eye of the beholder. That would be YOU!)
It’s possible. It’s MORE than possible, it’s achievable.
I hear people saying right now “but I haven’t taken care of myself. I have all these problems.”
There's no time like the present to turn your life around to be the best it can be right now.
It may not be perfect. But what is perfect? It WILL be better.
I have a picture of myself at age 2 or 3. In the picture is me, my father, my grandmother, my great-grandmother and my great, great grandmother. Five generations!!! Not many can say they have lived long enough to have a photo taken of five generations of their family.
My earliest family was from hearty stock. They lived at a time where medical advances were taking hold AND when life wasn’t full of toxins, disposable conveniences and distractions. They also lived at a time where money and stuff wasn’t the sum total of your worth.
Exercise, healthy food, a sense of community and a positive outlook were integrated into their lives. These were not elements they had to seek out, pay for or make time for in the course of the day. This WAS the course of the day.
WHO HAS TIME TO LIVE WELL AND BE HEALTHY??
YOU DO! WE DO!
We now have modern conveniences to help us live simpler lives.
You can pick up a bread maker, food processor or air fryer at a local thrift or consignment store. Most likely they’ve barely been used and are a fraction of their original costs. These machines practically do all of your chopping, kneading, blending and cooking for you. Set it and forget it. The next thing you know you have healthy, no preservative or additive bread wafting delicious smells throughout your kitchen.
Do some of the prep on the weekends.
"But I don't have time." YES, YOU DO. Get the kids to help. It's fun and good training for them.
Listen to your favorite music or a class lecture while you slice, dice, blend and bake.
I am by no means a goddess in the kitchen but with a few inexpensive and simple machines assisting me with meal prep we eat a lot healthier.
Grow some herbs on your balcony, patio, or in your garden. Inexpensive and easy. A little tending and you have fresh basil in your pasta sauce. It’s other worldly. Basil from a plant instead of a bottle!
Park your car farther away from the entrance to a store and get a little walk in.
Climb the stairs.
If you can’t do that turn on your computer and find a chair workout on YouTube.
What interests you? Read about it. Can’t afford a book? A library card is free and so are the books. Or spend a quarter at a library book sale.
You can hack the heck out of life to make it better.
Aging doesn't need to be a slog.
It isn’t forever.
You say you were dealt a crappy hand of cards?
You have the power to change the hand you were dealt.
You get the whole lemons into lemonade thing, right?
There are people much worse off than any of us and they are - as they say- CRUSHING IT!!!
If we just sit around feeling sorry for ourselves we rot. We disintegrate and fade from existence.
There is so much out there within our grasp to make life better.
Not perfect, but better.
“Who wants to live forever?”
Forever can be lived in a day.
One beautiful day.
As always, thanks for reading.
See you next time!
Don't forget to click above for articles on Travel, Meditation and Qigong and soon, Nature.
On recommendation of my acupuncturist I've decided to start a new blog about what it means to age and what it has meant to ME to age.
In my humble opinion, everyone needs an acupuncturist. They're remarkable. Part therapist, part holistic practitioner, part nutritionist, part friend. ALL BRILLIANT. (For those who are reticent it's virtually pain-free, relaxing, transformative, healing, and so much more.)
No two aging stories are exactly alike.
so many stories are similar and have similar components.
I'm NOT into the whole "anti-aging" movement. You may have read that on my other blog. I'll repost it here soon.
I am into PRO-AGING.
I'm all FOR aging.
...with a plan.
You plan your vacations.
You plan your retirement.
You plan your work
why aren't you planning your positive aging?
If you take a look at the side bar to the right you'll see that I've lived a BIG life. A life that was not sustainable for the long haul.
I sustained it for about 35 years and that was plenty.
THEN I realized in my body, mind, intellect, spirit, and emotions that I needed to transition to the next phase of my life. I have taken many elements with me and have left many elements to fond memory.
Face it, we can't do everything forever.
Of course, you can teach, consult and write until you drop (if you so desire and if you so desire).
You can travel with a long list of conveniences for comfort.
In addition, the most wholesome things you can do are read, learn, perform appropriate exercises, meditate, volunteer, spend time in your community and eat a clean and healthy diet. Making the most of those components age may not really be an issue for you.
I do recognize that many of you are facing health challenges and adjustment has become your middle name.
I adjust all the time and when my ego gives me negative feedback I tell it to STICK IT and continue on my merry way.
I've even been experimenting with chair exercise. Not because I'm relegated to exercise in a chair but for variety and to give my battered body a break. PLUS IT WORKS!
If you can't exercise standing up, SIT DOWN!
And if you can exercise standing up, MOVE IT!
PLEASE don't be like generations of my family who reached their 60's or retirement age and proceeded to sit in front of the television and let the world pass them by. They weren't particularly debilitated or ill. They just gave it all up.
AND THAT is when they began to deteriorate. None of them ever had anything major wrong with them UNTIL they stopped moving and didn't eat food with substance and didn't keep their minds active.
Some things took their toll quickly but with others it was a slow burn.
All in all the inactivity, inattentiveness to healthy eating, and disuse of their brains contributed MORE to the onset of illness and disease than anything else.
Just because you retire or transition from your original, active occupation doesn't mean it's over.
Far from it!
I'm in AWE of people in their 70's, 80's and beyond who are still very active in all aspects of their lives.
They are living life by example to all of us..
We can all be examples to each other in our outlook on aging.
Aging is not a curse, or a malady.
Those who dismiss us will be lucky to age with health, dignity and wisdom.
Move it or lose it is not some kitschy catch phrase. It's essential to longevity.
Start where you are.
You may be in your 40's or 50's. If you didn't start caring for yourself or you were burning the candle at both ends in your 20's and 30's, TODAY IS THE DAY to start.
Start with your mindset then bring your body along.
You will be amazed what a few positive thoughts about the beauty of aging will do for you inside and out.
YOU are the person people will come to for advice, insight, feedback and input.
You are a wealth of knowledge whether you know it or not.
Time on this planet gives us a cornucopia of insight regardless of our walk of life.
I plan on getting into the nitty-gritty of aging from my personal perspective and from the perspective of my elders and teachers in the articles to come.
As my grandfather would say on each of his birthdays
"I'd rather being having a birthday than not."
Happy birthday to us!
Each and every year.
This week's article is dedicated to my remarkable beyond words acupuncturist, Mimi Vreeland. Thanks for everything!
As always, thanks for reading.
See you again soon.
As a Baby Boomer, accomplished & award-winning writer, producer, director, choreographer, actor, singer, dancer, stunt person, restauranteur, fitness trainer, professional water skier, professional stunt person, meditation master teacher, Qigong instructor, & (whew) sound healing instructor, KaZ has had A BIG LIFE. One would think she'd prefer to sit down for a while. But not her! She's thrilled to have the option to move into the next third of her life.
That being said she asks the same questions you do.
"Who am I?"
"Where am I going?"
How will I get there?
"How may I use my talents, experience, expertise, creativity & wisdom to live the best life?"
She's ready to explore the avenues. She's transitioned without fear, but not without questions. She has some answers. AND she's open to more.
More contentment. More fulfillment.
On her terms.