pondelok, 28. decembra 2009

GROWING OLDER IS MANDATORY, GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL





THE ROSE
*
The first day of class our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to know someone we didn't already know. I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder. I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up her entire being.
She said, "Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years old. Can I give you a hug?"

I laughed and enthusiastically responded, "Of course you may!" And she gave me a giant squeeze.
"Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?" I asked.
She jokingly replied, "I'm here to meet a rich husband, get married, have a couple of children, and then retire and travel."
"No seriously," I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be taking on this challenge at her age.
"I always dreamed of having a college education and now I'm getting one!" she told me.
After class we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate milkshake. We became instant friends. Every day for the next three months we would leave class together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening to this "time machine" as she shared her wisdom and experience with me.
Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she easily made friends wherever she went. She loved to dress up and she reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living it up.

At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet. I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped all of her 3 x 5 note cards.
Frustrated and a little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said, "I'm sorry I'm so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me! I'll never get my speech back in order, so let me just tell you what I know."
As we laughed she cleared her throat and began, "We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy, and achieving success. You have to laugh and find humor every day. You've got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die. We have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know it! There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up. If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don't do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old.
If I am eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything, I will still turn eighty-eight. Any body can grow older. That doesn't take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up by always finding the opportunity in change.
Have no regrets. The elderly rarely have regrets for the things we did, but rather for things we did NOT do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets."
She concluded her speech by courageously singing "The Rose".
She challenged each of us to study the lyrics. At the years end, Rose finished the college degree she had begun all those years ago.
One week after graduation, Rose died peacefully in her sleep. Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never too late to be all you can possibly be.
These words have been passed along in loving memory of ROSE.


REMEMBER, GROWING OLDER IS MANDATORY, GROWING UP IS OPTIONAL




12 komentárov:

  1. Viera, that post is the very best that I have read
    I agree with you ~ We make a living by what we get,
    and we make a life by what we give
    Very beautiful post
    Thanks, Regina

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  2. Such a lovely story Viera...I had a tear in my eye for such a sweet lady...My friends say I am allways dreaming...perhaps its a good thing....I hope that 2010 will see those dreams come true,,,,
    Happy new year Dear Viera.....
    Love Frank
    xxx

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  3. Beautiful post, Viera! How true those words are!

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  4. This is great post. I have during the season 2003/2004 on subject history of philosophy and art on Marion collage student as it is on your blog. Rose, it sounds great as symbol, the power for life and for new knowledge as new blossomy in season of Autumn.
    My student in Oxford has been about 70; Lady for respect but curious and thirsty for knowledge. Between all this young people on such place I could not to believe when I have meet Lady Elizabeth for for first time. My student is still alive; and she has been one the best in this season. For this new year she has send to me Christmas card and chocolates. So thanks for this great blog which I shall shear it with my friends and contacts.
    Thanks Viera...

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  5. Hi. I hope you don"t mind me meddling with my two cents. As you can imagine, that would be worth two dollars today. I like people who know when to give-up but not too easily. Really it is possible to keep going when you think the end is eminent. It is only an option and motivator to continue.

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  6. Regina, your visits here make me very happy. Thank you so much. Wishing you a day filled with joy and happiness!
    with love
    viera

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  7. Regina, your visits here make me very happy. Thank you so much. Wishing you a day filled with joy and happiness!
    with love
    viera

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  8. Welcome, Frank! By you visiting here you shall with me your friendship and some of the beautiful feelings of life. Thank you very much! Have a wonderful time...

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  9. You are most welcome Belita, That gives me such happiness ! Truly, joy rings from my heart...Wish you a wonderful holidays...

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  10. Dear Anja, I love your story and lovely words , they are so emotional and bewitching. Wishing you a day filled with joy and happiness! Viera

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť
  11. Kenneth, Thank you so much for visiting. I hope also that New Year brought us great happiness... See you again soon...

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť

  12. Very touched post, dear Viera

    Unfortunately only a FEW people who dared to SHOW THEIR OLD IDENTITY as Rose :-)

    Thanks for great sharing.
    Have a nice day :-)

    OdpovedaťOdstrániť