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Becoming Vintage

I’ve never been a person to focus on my age. So far, each decade of life has brought new and unexpected rewards. This year I entered my sixth decade on earth. In all honesty, it feels terrifying. I don’t feel sixty. What does age feel like anyway? Feeling your age is something I spoke about freely as I defied gravity in my forties and became a tri-athlete and competed with multiage athletes. Maybe I was racing against time itself.

Twenty-five years ago, my husband and our very young family moved to Westchester, an old neighborhood in Bakersfield, California that once had more horses than cars traveling down our street. My arts and crafts bungalow is vintage. It was built in 1912. I’ve loved this old house from the first day. On what day did this house become old?

Bakersfield was my childhood hometown. When I was 18 years old, I packed my little yellow Toyota pickup and headed to University. When I took flight, I did not know about the draw of migration, that lives deep in the soul. It is beyond thought. My brain knew that summer in the central valley was like living in an oven. Bakersfield was a big small town and my greatest fear was that I would grow old and die in the very place I took my first breath. There was a lot of life to grab hold of and I did not want to miss it. After 17 years in Southern California living close to the Pacific I returned.

And now, just like a blink of the eye, my kids have flown away and I have entered into the vintage years of life. It is a new era, I have stopped racing and now, just like my old home I have weathered seasons that only living them out can comprehend. Looking out on the now paved streets with electrics cars replacing gas guzzling engines, I wonder, am I old? Time will tell the rest of this story. Today I will enjoy the view from this new vantage point.

"Bless the Lord... who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagles."

Psalm 103:1 & 5

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