We celebrated my mother’s 93rd birthday today. I am overwhelmed with gratitude that she remains healthy, active and clear of mind, especially in light of how I see others aging.  I believe old age is simply a distillation of a life lived.  My mother has always been a kind and loving person, generous and forgiving.  Her deep faith guided her through life’s challenges…my sister’s tragic brain injury, torturous 30 year decline and death, and the loss of my father 10 years ago.

She has chosen to grow as she ages. I am awed by her strength and decisiveness, selling her home and moving at age 89 into a retirement community without fanfare.  I am thrilled at how she has assimilated into her new life, made new friends and grown to love her new home. I am proud of her for taking the initiative to sell her condo in Florida, without an agent…and at a good price, too!  I love that she is so appreciative, that she sends lovely cards and letters and that she has become a wee bit sassy in her old age. 

This will be the legacy she leaves…one of graciousness, acceptance, love and gratitude. This is the distillation of her life. What will be yours?  How will people remember you?  Begin now to live your best life to create a legacy that your loved ones will be proud of.

by Mary Lotto Ross