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What Is the Perfect Age to Be?


a sign of the times

What age would you be if you could choose? Is there a perfect age? Small children want to keep being bigger and older, teens want to be in their early 20s, and on and on it goes. Some older people yearn for days when they were more agile and carefree.

At my stage of life, I can see that every age has its advantages and disadvantages. Something inside me still recoils when I'm offered a "senior discount" - it's like ... can that person really think I'm that old?! And yet who would doubt that I'm enjoying being a grandfather? 😀

I experienced one of the downsides today when my eye doctor told me that I have the beginning of a cataract in my right eye. He said I'm young to have this, but it's there. Someone please name another advantage for me ... quick!

My wife forwarded an e-mail to me yesterday with several funny perspectives on aging. I'll start off with a picture too scarily similar to the sign on the right above. Apparently this man was the "poster child" for the sign.

for real

Here's a comic strip that was in the e-mail.

hitting too close to home...

One of the pictures was a pie chart of a senior citizen's time usage.

life segment pie chart

Not all older folks are slow-moving geezers though, as attested by this sign.

hitting too close to home...

But older folks do need to be careful in their activities not to injure themselves. Here's an exemplary senior biker, the picture of health with his helmet.

careful senior cyclist...

Young folks need to be careful from their youth to avoid some problems in their "golden years."

please pass the sunscreen

Someone please pass me the sunscreen....

As I said earlier, an upside to this stage of life is being a grandparent. Here are a couple of pictures of our grandson Drew on the 4th of July - our little flag waver and watching the fireworks with Grandma.

waving the flag

enjoying the fireworks

Here's how he looked one year ago at the fireworks.

baby Drew at the fireworks

Ah! The upsides and downsides of being Drew's age! So I ask again - what age would you be if you could choose? What is the perfect age to be?

One of my readers (a history teacher) suggested a poll question for me - Which of these activities will be part of your 14th of July (Bastille Day) celebration? with several suggested activities - storming a prison, guillotining someone, etc. I laughed and immediately dismissed the idea.

quotation...

"Grace trumps sin every time." - J.D. Crowley

=^..^= =^..^=
Rob

If we'd stop trying to be happy we would probably enjoy life more.


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18 Comments on “What Is the Perfect Age to Be?”

  1. #1 John C.
    on Jul 10th, 2008 at 10:31 pm

    I can only imagine the name of this a fore mentioned history teacher. I can only think of one that would have French Revolutionary History on her (oops, his/her) mind. Although, storming a prison does sound interesting. I can’t say that guillotining a bunch of people would be fun (of course I wouldn’t know, never tried it).

  2. #2 David McGuire
    on Jul 10th, 2008 at 10:39 pm

    One thing I know for sure is that I’m too young to be old! I learned that from my dad. In his later years (when he was in his 70s and 80s), he attended Sunday school classes with the folks who were in their 40s. He said he just couldn’t put up with “old” people always talking about their aches and pains.

    When my “young” college students make some comment about me being old, I remind them that they and I were born in the twentieth century. I also believe that you can feel and act a lot younger than your chronological age says you are. When you have taught college for thirty-five years, you MUST feel and act younger.

    And yes, grandchildren are indeed wonderful. If I had known how much fun grandchildren were going to be, I think I would have just skipped having my own kids. But then how would I become a grandpa—that’s quite the quandary.

  3. #3 Rob
    on Jul 10th, 2008 at 10:40 pm

    John, believe it or not, the history teacher is not L.A.! She is in France right now, probably looking forward to celebrating the 14th over there in style! The teacher who made that suggestion is actually a man.

    David, I concur totally. That’s why I’m still taken off guard when I get offered senior discounts. My dream is to die young at an old age.

  4. #4 Rachael Woodard
    on Jul 10th, 2008 at 10:45 pm

    I’m 45 and loving it! I think it’s the perfect age. The kids are able to dress, go potty, read and do chores without me having to hold their hands, hold their bodies and chase them around the room. I’ve got 1 daughter in college, who is a joy and delight and a son who just got his driver’s license. I think 45 is perfect. I’ve been out of college since I was 22, so I’ve now had more “real life” (23 years) than growing up years. It’s just fun.

    At this age your aches and pains are NOT quite set in. Our kids are old enough for us to leave them alone and we can travel “in peace” or if we want, we can take them with us and we can all enjoy the sights together. I dreamed of the time when all 4 of my kids would be teenagers together and I’ve finally reached it! Yes, I think that these, truly “are the days!”

    You could never pay me enough money to “go back” to when all 4 needed me every waking moment of every day. It was truly a horrible experience, which I totally try to block out of my mind. The only word that adequately describes the time when my kids were all under age 6 was “exhausted.” I never want to do that again.

  5. #5 Cindy
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 1:04 am

    I would say 25 – if I could have the knowledge that I have now – at 44.

  6. #6 Jan D.
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 6:55 am

    I would have to say about 35…your brain has finally started to mature, but your body hasn’t yet started to fall apart!

  7. #7 Bet
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 7:30 am

    Love that picture of Drew with his American flag! So cute.

  8. #8 Amanda
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 8:19 am

    I can imagine I know who that history teacher is . . . I can just hear him suggesting that poll too. 🙂

  9. #9 M. Smith
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 8:30 am

    I think age 28 is the best. When I was 28, I could still do things that now are rather more difficult and my mind had mostly awakened from adolescent fog. Now, I am more tired, get less done, physically weaker, and have less stamina than I did then.
    In a way, I’m dreading having children because I know it’ll be that much more responsibility and fatigue. On the other hand, I keep telling myself what God says: children are an inheritance and blessing from Him! 🙂

  10. #10 Laura
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 9:15 am

    It’s been interesting to see the wide range of opinions in the comments so far. Personally, I think that RIGHT NOW is always the perfect age to be.

    I enjoyed my childhood; the teen years were fine; the 20’s were good, too. Although the childbearing years were tiring, they had benefits that outweighed the challenges. You just can’t trade the experience of snuggling a peach-fuzz headed little bundle with “new baby” smell for anything! Now that the kids are older (3rd-10th grade), there are other perks.

    I look forward to the future with anticipation, because God has been so good to me in the past and the present. Even though my path has been narrowed in some ways by health, lack of talent, or other limitations, He has always deepened the opportunities in the areas that remain. When I was a child, I didn’t realize that I’d continue to grow in skill and continue to develop new interests throughout my life. I’m not rich, I’ll never be famous, and my memory isn’t the best, but GOD IS SO GOOD!

  11. #11 Sharon
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 10:00 am

    I’d have to say my current age (22) is the best age I’ve lived yet! Although I say this every year…does that mean it just keeps getting better? From what I’ve read in the other comments, it sounds like I have a lot to look forward to!
    I’m sure you get this a lot, but thanks for sending out your updates. It’s so refreshing to still have a clean humor connection even after graduating from BJU. Thanks!

  12. #12 Janet
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 12:08 pm

    I think that being three is best! You’re still cute enough to get away with just about anything without getting into too much trouble. Potty training is usually done. You don’t have to go to school yet. You can eat with your fingers, and you can fall asleep just about anywhere and people think it’s cute. If you get tired, people will pick you up or put you in a stroller. And if you pick up a few toys and put them in the right bin, people think you are an amazing housekeeper! You don’t have a past to regret, and the only future you’re worried about is when your mom is going to give you another cookie.

  13. #13 Rob
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 9:43 pm

    Wow! What great comments – such diversity! I think I tend to agree with Laura – whatever age I am now is the best age to be. As I said in the blog post, each age has its own advantages and disadvantages. I miss certain advantages of former stages of life that this stage doesn’t have, but I wouldn’t want some of those disadvantages in my life again. 😎 Each stage just seems to get better and better.

    When I was young I thought I would have many life-long friendships, and now I know that many is really just some. But I now know who those life-long friends are. Relationships are so much richer and deeper. I love the French saying “Si jeunesse savait et si vieillesse pouvait.” = “If only youth knew and if only old age could.” That sentiment was echoed by several in their comments. I hope even more will express their thoughts on this.

  14. #14 Carrie
    on Jul 11th, 2008 at 10:44 pm

    I also love my age right now (36). I’m only just beginning to feel creaky, my kids are potty trained and yet young enough to say cute and adorable things. But they aren’t hormonal yet! I did love college too, and high school was great as well. And those lovely memories of childhood on the farm. . . The Lord is good!

  15. #15 Jim Payne
    on Dec 11th, 2008 at 10:27 am

    Rob,
    The perfect age is the one that you are now. God has something for us to do and to bless us at all ages. At 79 He lead me to the love of my life and marriage. Now at 80 I still believe God has more for me to do. We will be trying to sell our house in MI and moving to NC where I will work in the office of Baptists Equipping Nationals, a mission board. So enjoy the age your now. You can’t turn the clock back or ahead.
    God Bless you and your family.

  16. #16 Rob
    on Dec 11th, 2008 at 3:10 pm

    @Jim Payne – I agree totally. I have enjoyed each stage of life. I would not really want to go back, though I do miss our kids’ being small. But I also look forward to what lies before me. Walking with the Lord is such a great adventure, especially as we let Him write the chronicle of our lives.

  17. #17 Karen
    on Mar 13th, 2009 at 10:05 pm

    The perfect age? My perfect age would be 28 because that’s when my son was 3, so sweet, so much fun, teachable, drew attention everywhere we went. Love being a mom and loved those precious “baby years.”

  18. #18 Rob
    on Mar 14th, 2009 at 9:11 pm

    @Karen – I also loved it when our children were that age. There was something new said or done on a daily basis. I guess that’s one thing I like about being a grandfather – I get to live it all over again, without some of the downsides of having toddlers. :shh: