Would I like to live to be a HUNDRED
That was the title of a recent survey. Naturally I opened it up and answered the questions.
I have been thinking of both my answers and my after thoughts. The simple answer a resounding YES
However I add a few provisos to my own wish, to live a full Century. I list them for your perusal;
- YES providing I am still mobile, slower possibly, but upright
- YES providing I still have all my marbles ( There are some who would say I lost them a long time ago)
- YES providing that I am not living in a hospice
- YES that I am nearby Stephanie or Michael and a few of the grandkids
- WHY because I would like to add to my bank of memories
- WHY because I would like to see my grandkids, happily employed in any job they enjoy
- WHY because I wish to see my grandchildren married and happy At least successful and happy) I have certainly had my share of friends comrades and family pass away far too soon. I honour those that have passed in my prayers and at other times in my life. When I was 16 and preparing to enter the Soldier Apprentice program. I thought 50 years was very far away. Now it has been 55 Years since I signed on that dotted line. Do I feel old not really Older yes. Many days I feel 18 far more days thinking and feeling 18 than feeling 80.I am happy to have 2 great kids Michael and Stephanie. As well as 7 Grandkids ranging from 25 years of age down to 3 ( next week). I have been an absent grandparent most of my life BUT I am concerned about their livliehoods. As the world as I knew it has changed so dramatically. I credit my darling daughter Stephanie for saving me from self destruction with booze.I have met thousands of great people, and a few not so great.I have travelled, met Royalty and met the poorest of the poor in India and other 3rd world countries.I have enjoyed the majority of my life thus far. I have met Popes and dictators. Mugabe and Ceaușescu come to mind. One is still alive one was drawn and quartered in Romania .I have experienced Love, Loss, Bankruptcy and depression. Friends and family saw me through those times of my life. All in all I am a happy fella. I love my kids and my dog (s).So yes I would love to carry on for a further 29/39 years who knows perhaps set a longevity record .Thanks for listening. This following story is from a 106 year old Lady also born in Aberdeen. Isabella Brearley
At 106 years old, Isabella Brearley does not mince words.She may not have known every name in the room at her birthday party Saturday — five generations of family showed up for the occasion — but she did have one piece of advice for all of them: “follow your road.”
“My advice to anybody is if they think, ‘that’s the the road I’m going to take,’ take it,” said Brearley, who turned 106 on Sunday.“If you take the other road, you’ll wish all the way along that you’d gone on your first thought,” Brearley added. “Follow your road because that’s where you’re meant to be.”Brearley, who now lives in a retirement home in Ancaster, has lived by her prescribed mantra. With five generations of family surrounding her, and her arm in a sling because of a broken collar bone suffered just days earlier, she wanted to tell one story, a story she knows very well. It was about how she moved away from Aberdeen, Scotland, where she was born in 1909, to move to Canada, and eventually settle in Hamilton.
‘Over my dead body’
“On my fourteenth birthday, I was sitting in the kitchen with my mother and I looked at her for a minute and I said, ‘I’m going to tell you something, you’re not going to like it, but I’m going to tell it to you so you’re prepared,'” started Brearley. “I said to her ‘I am 14 today, but four years from now I will be 18. And as an 18-year-old woman I have the right of choice.'”
‘I will not stay here’,” Brearley said. “And she looked at me and she said. ‘How do you know?’ And I said, ‘I know, I can feel it. This will not be my staying place. I will go when I am 18.'” Brearley’s mother was not convinced.
“She said, ‘Over my dead body.’ And I said right back, ‘If you have to be dead, I promise to bury you.'” Brearley, true to her word, left for Canada when she was 18.
“And the only one that came to say goodbye to me, at that station, in that big place, and that big train was loaded with friends bidding people goodbye, all alone,” she said, pointing to her chest. “And at the last minute my mother ran in and grabbed me and she said, ‘Let me at least kiss you good bye.’ I never forgot the words, ‘Let me at least kiss you good bye.’ I jumped on the train and I said I’m not changing my mind.”
She has never looked back. She married William Brearley shortly after she arrived in Canada.
She started one of the first nurseries to take care of children while women worked shortly after the Second World War, said Sandra Patterson, one of Brearley’s three children. She fought for seniors rights while she aged, and recently started painting.A small celebration for Brearley will be held Sunday, from 2 to 4 p.m. at the fireside room of the Meadows Long Term Care Centre in Ancaster (12 Tranquility Ave.).