I find it hard to believe that I am experiencing one of the best years of my life as I celebrate my 90th birthday. And it's not because the previous 89 years have been dull are depressing in any way. Raised in the pre-depression middle-class, I've lived through some fascinating times. I've been extremely fortunate and as a lifelong educator I feel driven to share some of my insights with anyone interested.
I've given quite a bit of thought to how life can be so good for a 90year older and thought that sharing them with you might serve to stimulate questions.
- Good genes. Although there is no longevity in my family, somehow my life was put together so that I have always had good health.
- A wonderful childhood. Raised in a lower middle class family I didn't realize that we were poor and I grew up in a wonderful city with family and friends without undue stress. While there was surprisingly little overt expression of love, I was not unduly pushed or ignored and though neither of my parents graduated from high school, they provided a warm home experience with broad life enhancing opportunities
- being around young people. I'm fortunate that my vocation is been public school work the challenge of nurturing young people coupled with and enjoyment of their enthusiasm and creative approach to life is something that seems to have carried over to me
- a caring government. I resonate to Pres. Obama's statement that quote I did not build (my life) alone public schools started my academic learning the military continued my education and I completed three college degrees through the G.I. Bill. The life of my wife and two of my four children have been extended because the government provides kidney transplants for those in need and my state has provided a pension for my years of work in education which is made it possible for me to enjoy my senior years
- monetary security has helped free me from undue anxiety and concern. Although I have not been blessed with great wealth, I've been very comfortable and not worried about basic needs something that brings undue anxiety and concern to many. I employment not only provided financial security but also a recognition of my talents.
- I've had the lifelong support of a loving partner family and friends and being a part of the faith community that focused on the meaning and purpose of life.