It's true what they say that age is just a state of mind. I feel I have not gotten old. Although I admit, I do see physical changes. My older friends talked to me about spider veins 10 years ago and I didn't have them then. Now, I am thrilled that I finally have them! I know, it's weird of me to have that kind of reaction. Maybe I think differently about age..and aging.
I see some lines on my face but I know they ought to be there. But it doesn't mean that I don't care. I do! There are ways to slow the aging process down. I'm just blessed to be friends with the owners of Ammara and they are one with me on this endeavor. I call it that because it needs time and a little effort too.
I've thought of a perfect analogy for taking care of my skin. Or the perfect justification so as not to feel guilty. When we were in school, we had leather shoes. I remember my mom telling me to polish them 2 or 3 times a week for it to maintain its shine and suppleness. She told us this because we could not buy a pair anytime we want. We HAD to take good care of it.
The same should go with our skin--the largest organ in our body, right?
But more than taking care of the physical is taking care of relationships…but now that I think about it, it is also physical because it involves the HEART. Turning 38 means I am blessed with another year to spend with my family, loved-ones, true friends. When I was younger, we were surrounded by family, and as kids, it was sort of required. How time flew and as one of my nieces (Jazzie) said when you are older and are marred by responsibilities, you seldom get the chance to get-together. Reminisce about the old times, remember embarrassing moments and just… LAUGH!!! Like little children again!
I tell myself now, with some friends dying too soon, I need to be reminded always that life is fleeting. You will never know when your time will come. I know it’s cliché: to live like it were your last day. Constantly, I think about it.
We came from Zamboanga a few days ago. It was the first time that my sons met their relatives there. They are cousins, aunts and uncles of my former husband. The first time I went there was in 1999. Over the years, I visited and slowly each time, I hear news of the death of one of the elders. Uncle Mil, Auntie Margie, Auntie Meng, may they all rest in peace. Uncle Mil called me a few days before he passed and he said, “It is nice to hear your beautiful voice” and he tried to listen to my stories over a long-distance call… it brings tears to my eyes! Auntie Meng’s letters are still in my keeping. I was able to see her 2 years ago. She would call to greet during Christmas or New Year. Little gestures to make me feel loved and that I was a part of their family. They were able to leave a legacy. They were able to touch my heart. They have truly lived well and their lives indeed remain an example to me. I still call them my own. I feel I belong even if I am technically no longer a member. I cannot thank them enough for making me feel welcome over the years.
This is what life is about! Love for family, love for friends and even love for the “unloveable”. A real test and a tough challenge! God has given me good and bad times. I sometimes question Him why He sends them my way. I want to believe it’s because He has such faith in me that I would be able to overcome them. At times, I tell Him, “wag naman masyado, Lord”. (Not too much, Lord!).
I would like to share this guide for starting successfully from John Maxwell. I try to live it. I am not there yet but I hang this where I can read it every day.
1.) Know Yourself
2.) Settle your family life
3.) Determine your priorities
4.) Develop your philosophy of life
5.) Get physically fit
6.) Learn your trade
7.) Pay the price
8.) Develop solid relationships
9.) Prepare for the future
10.) Find purpose for your life
I’m already 38. I have to start living life and I feel that there’s not enough time!
Estar con amor y familia kada tiempo puede. Kada Hora preciosa!
(Be with love and family whenever possible. Every hour is precious!-translation care of Michelle E.)
Until my next chapter! Amor con amor se paga (Love begets love) – (Sorry, hangover from Zamboanga.)