“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a ride!” Hunter S Thompson
Nobody wants to get old. If you’re lucky, you will grow old and wise. At least, you do if you learn from the lessons that life sends you. I guess perhaps wisdom enables us to tolerate that which would have been intolerable when we were younger. It breeds acceptance of what is. The recognition of what can and should be changed, and what can and should be left in peace.
I’ve realised this year more than ever that although not everyone wants to get old, most want to get older than they are. I suspect that as a percentage, there are very few who feel ready to leave this world. There is so much organisation to be done, so many conversations to be had, so much beauty to admire. So many people to hug, and to laugh with. New memories to be made, to cherish for eternity.
I understand that making the most of every moment, whilst an admirable goal, is not always a realistic approach. We evolved to have downs as well as ups, to feel lows as well as highs. The storm will always pass, there is always light at the end of the tunnel, every cloud has a silver lining. Sometimes we just need to wallow in the misery of the moment for a while. It’s unhealthy for this to go on too long, but it’s also unrealistic to ask ourselves to never feel unhappy, or unsettled, or uncomfortable.
A friend reminded me today that in order to care for others, we must first care for ourselves. We must put our own oxygen masks on first. What can you do today, as an act of self care?
© Sue Palmer, The Horse Physio, 2021
Treating your horse with care, connection, curiosity and compassion