Joys of Aging? Yeah.

When I saw the title, I knew this book is where I’m at. By no means am I an octogenarian, and I’m double twenty and some.

A collection of connections on aging, I Feel Great about My Hands: And other unexpected Joys of Aging, edited by Shari Graydon, seems just the thing when pronounced with “the knees of a 70-year-old.”

I do fit right in among these women who have come of age, the second age of womanhood and third age of life. Joys of aging. I’ve certainly not heard very many olders through the years who gushed with joy about their fondness for the decade behind them and expectations for another incoming.

The past ten years have been costly on a most personal level. I believed in my health, that one thing we have if we have nothing else—except the illusion parted at age 33 with a diagnosis of melanoma. Six months later I was tumbling through a physical cascade, which was met with an emotional one. By the end of 2005 I thought I had seen the darkest days; I was wrong.

I read the words between the book’s covers and discovered a more subtle sweetness and far less bitterness. Each person’s writing was a dream of its own under the same sky, and I took the time to stop after each woman had her say. This is nonfiction. Nothing that began ended as I expected, but it is nonfiction.

I admit to reading bits to my husband and snickering, and crying. Sharon Carstairs pulled the chair from beneath me, so powerful the beginning and ending. Uncommonly familiar,Finding One’s Voice.” Powerful women, potent ideas, rich, rich experience from which they rise.

If you’re pondering the pucker around your eyes or the irregular looping in your grandmother’s conversation, consider connecting with these women on a level you’d probably never experience face to face with anyone.

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