GROW UP - NOT- OLD !!!!!
"Have no regrets. The elderly "
The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged
us to get to know someone we didn't already know. I stood
up to look around
when a gentle hand touched my shoulder. I turned around to find
wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up
She said, "Hi there. My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years old. Can I
give you a hug?" I laughed and enthusiastically responded, "Of course,
you may!" and she gave me a giant squeeze. "Why are you in college at
your age?" I asked. She jokingly replied, "I'm here to meet a
husband, get married, have a couple of children, and then retire and
"No seriously," I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be
taking on this challenge at her age. "I always dreamed of having a
college education and now I'm getting one!" she told me.
After class we walked to the student union building and shared a
chocolate milkshake. We became instant friends. Every day for the
three months we would leave class together and talk nonstop. I was
always mesmerized listening to this "time machine" as she shared her
wisdom and experience with me.
Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and easily
friends wherever she went. She loved to dress up and she reveled in
attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living
At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our graduation
banquet and I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced
stepped up to the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech,
she dropped her three by five cards on the floor. Frustrated and a
little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said
sorry. I'm so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is
killing me! I'll never get my speech back in order so let me just
you what I know." As we laughed she cleared her throat and began:
"We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we
playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy,
1. You have to laugh and find humor every day.
2. You've got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die.
have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know
3. "There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up.
If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed
for one full year
and don't do one single thing, you will turn twenty years
old. If I
am eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and
anything I will turn eighty-eight. Anybody can grow older.
doesn't take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up by always
finding the opportunity in change."
4. "Have no regrets. The elderly usually don't have regrets for what
did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people
death are those with regrets."
She concluded her speech by courageously singing "The Rose."
challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our
At the year's end Rose finished the college degree she had begun
those years ago. One week after graduation Rose died peacefully in
sleep. Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in
tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never
late to be young.
HAVE A NICE DAY !!