I've decided what I want to be when I grow up: a wise elder.
For the past two years I've been wrestling with this question:
How does one age well, live well, die well, and squeeze out every ounce of life before passing from this earth?
To find the answer, I've been quietly collecting information on creative aging, and researching how the role of wise elder can be reclaimed in American society.
After nine years of receiving membership solicitations from AARP, I've replaced my eye rolling at the very thought and actually joined this year. I am no longer coloring my hair -- I'm going gray with joy!
As I continue my career in higher ed, I also want to prepare for that day in about 15 years when I "retire" from my "day job" and collect "full social security" and launch into an encore career of coaching and mentoring others who want to transition into an elderhood full of creativity, vitality and wellness. I have been mentoring people for decades, both at home and at work.
Of course I don't really know how the timing will work out. And I don't fully know I will be offering to help other elders reach their goals. But I have some ideas, which I'll be spending the next year working through both in my own journaling and here on the blog.
Here's a couple of books on the topic, one I've read, and a couple of good resources that I'm using as I get started on this journey.