I talk about my mother a bit on the blog. In reality, I was probably a bit of a daddy’s girl growing up, but have grown closer to my mother in adulthood. She’s been my rock through many ups and downs over the past 20 or so years and the first person I go to with anything on my mind.
Mum grew up in the far west of the state, the oldest of six kids. She left school at 14 to work in her parent’s shop and met my dad 4-5yrs later when he arrived in town as player / coach of the local football team. They moved to my childhood hometown after they married in the early 1960s and mum remains in the same house… over 50 years later.
She tends to think of herself as nice-but-boring, but she’s unbelievably kind and generous to those around her. She also turned 73 yesterday and I thought – for something different – I’d take the opportunity to talk to her about ageing. About life and death… particularly because she’s surprisingly zen about the latter.
You don’t look a day over 72. What’s it like, being 73?
Mentally I don’t feel it and when I look in the mirror I get a shock, although I feel it in my body sometimes. I realise I can’t do what I used to and all of a sudden I have wrinkles and spots. *Shows me her blotchy forearms as evidence of aforementioned spots and wrinkles*
Do you have any regrets?
No, and that’s my problem I think. I’m happy with my life. I’ve never wanted to travel. I’ve been happy with everything I have. And I think that makes me boring.
Although perhaps I would have liked something frivolous like being able to sing or play the piano.
What would you do differently?
Nothing. I’m happy with the way my life’s turned out.
What do you still want to do / achieve?
I want to stay healthy. As you get older your health becomes more important and more of an issue.
I can’t think of anything else I want to would like to do. I’m just happy with my life as it is.
What have you enjoyed most about your life?
I enjoyed it when you kids were young. Other mothers were relieved when school restarted but I loved having time with you during school holidays.
My lasting friendships also mean the world to me, and these are even more important now that I’m alone. I’m thankful to have wonderful friends.
You constantly say you don’t want to get too ‘old’ and don’t seem to fear dying. Does your religion or faith help in that respect?
I feel a sense of calm or tranquility. I like being a part of something and spending time with like-minded people. (I informed her those peeps were called her ‘tribe’.)
I don’t even think about dying and going to heaven, I just feel at peace.
What’s your advice for me? A spring chicken at a mere 49 years old?
Stay healthy. (She says this as I lift a glass of champagne to my lips and take a swig.)
You should be happy with what you have; or at least not want the whole world. You need to be realistic about your expectations. I’m lucky to have this house and these things around me. (I refrain from making sarcastic comment about the Darcy Doyle plates on the wall!)
I realise I’m a pretty boring person but life can be good.
Oh, and you should have lots of friends. I mean… look at all of my cards. *halo slips from mum’s head as she counts her birthday cards and mumbles that there’s only 23*
What else should I have asked mum? (Other than how she raised such an amazing daughter #obvs!)
I’ve joined Leanne from Deep Fried Fruit and some other bloggers to help promote “ageing positively” and the Lovin’ Life mindset across the interwebz. You can link up via any one of us!