Many years ago I was in a feminist theater group in which one of our exercises was to riff on the phrase “I remember...” The phrase is highly evocative, and is frequently used as a writing prompt these days. This morning I found myself using it.
I remember conversations with a friend about how lucky we were that, unlike our mothers, we each had rich inner resources we’d fall back on in our old age.
I remember thinking I wouldn’t be like my older relatives when I was older, since I wasn’t like they’d been when they were younger.
I remember when my father died and I saw my mother’s utter devastation, telling my therapist, “That will never happen to me.” He replied, “How do you know? You might remarry.” In retrospect, what he should’ve said was “Are you hell-bent on avoiding that?” I did.
As is evident, I’m reflecting on getting older, which I seem to do more and more with each passing day.
Try the exercise, no matter what age you are. It works.