You many be getting younger every year

Unfortunately, most of my grandparents died way too young, but my surviving grandmother was a sweetheart.
I liked her so much that I gave her a huge five-pound box of chocolates for Christmas, when I was in high school. Whereon, she said, “Marie, you should save your money.”
I thought that was the least I could do after all the delicious wintergreen drops she gave me as a child. She always had a stock in her apron.
One time I was invited to spend a week with Grandma. When I came home, I complained, “We had nothing but wieners, wieners, wieners all the time.” She knew wieners were my favourite food.
I remember Grandma as an old woman. A spunky old woman, but still old. She died at age 72.
Obviously, my perception had something to do with my age relative to hers, but that wasn’t the whole thing. My mother died at age 82, and she was much, much younger—more energetic and vibrant—than my grandmother.
And I, in turn, am much younger than my mother.
This phenomenon has been studied by population experts Warren Sanderson of the University of New York in Stony Brook and Sergei Scherbov of the Vienna Institute of Demography.
In the June, 2005 scientific journal “Nature” the pair explained their new concept of aging. In light of the new longevity, they have defined aging not by how long you have been alive, but by how many years you have left.
“Conventional measures of age count years since birth; however, as lives lengthen, we need to think of age also in terms of years left until death,” say the researchers.
According to their graphs, the average American in 2000 was 35 years old and had a life expectancy of 43 more years. They estimate that the same American in 2050 would be almost 42 years old and would have a life expectancy of almost 46 more years.
In other words, you are growing younger while you are growing old. You have more years to live as time marches on.
That’s why the “baby boomers” seem even younger than we were at their age, and that’s why you feel so energetic and youthful even at your age.
What a wonderful gift of life we have all been given! And with this new longevity, it’s reasonable to believe you still may have some of the best years of your life ahead of you.
So, it’s time to reinvent yourself, right now. Time to redefine your goals. To take stock of what you always wanted to do, but perhaps thought it was too late to accomplish.
Time to rediscover dreams you may have given up. Time to learn again to believe in the impossible.
In Lewis Carroll’s delightful “Alice in Wonderland,” Alice once said, “There is no use in trying. One can’t believe impossible things.”
Whereon the queen replied, “I dare say you haven’t had much practice. When I was your age, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
So, keep the recent longevity findings in mind and practice staying young. Dream dreams, set goals, and never stop believing in the impossible.
Marie Snider is an award-winning health care writer and syndicated columnist. Write her at thisside60@aol.com or visit www.visit-snider.com

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