Monday, April 30, 2012

Broken Dreams, By Evelyn Watson

I love Evelyn’s reflections on aging. They are so personal and insightful. It’s something we often avoid thinking about, yet the reality is that each of us must face the changes that aging brings to our minds and bodies. What do you think of Evelyn’s approach? Is there encouragement here?

The Lord is near those who have a broken heart.

Psalms 34:18

 According to the enveloping apparel of my body I’m no longer considered young, yet secretly I don’t believe I’m really the age of the loose fitting, un-ironed, blemished covering I’m beginning to wear. Perhaps a little worn but still plenty of wear left, I tell myself. I have never thought I was old. I realize I have aged but certainly I can’t be considered old.

 Regardless of the amount of years I may accumulate I shall not be old until not only my strength is gone but my mind no longer allows me to think myself young. Limitations shall not make me old for the young suffer those also, although the aged suffer them more. We all suffer illness and disease, handicaps and loneliness regardless of age.

          Being old becomes a battle in our minds watching and dealing with the changes taking place in our bodies. And as we struggle with unfulfilled dreams we realize will never materialize and when hope of those dreams begin to fade from our thinking, then, we will wake up one day and know that we are old.

 Changes are happening in my body and yet the health I am still blessed with gives me the strength and mind to continue believing I am young. I like who I am better than when I was younger and the peace that abounds within my soul I wouldn't trade for the look of youth. Some things that come with aging make it easier to accept. I accept my outside worn look because I like the new look inside. Aging has brought some good changes as well as those I don’t consider to be an asset.

It’s those broken dreams that have bothered me. Being the idealist I am, I found it hard to let them die when I know realistically they won’t come to pass. They’ve lurked in the shadows of my mind and when I thought they were gone I found they were still there, and then the struggles of letting them go once again becomes my challenge. I am convinced I will carry some of them to my grave before I am free of them but perhaps the struggles with them keeps me young, because should I let them go I would certainly be old. Yet, like broken shells upon the shore remains of life once lived, my broken dreams give tribute to my life and shall be reminders of the person I know I really was.  


  1. Having read Gifts from the Sea, and now your story ,I can relate to my own feelings of having to let go of the dreams of my youth. Not just letting go, but being open to other possiablities, though they pale to the dreams that I've held for so long. I take heart that I have friends who keep me feeling young. And together we can pretend or dispense disbelief. We can dress up and have tea parties, giggle at old movies and eat popcorn for dinner.

  2. Very insightful, Evelyn. Your giving spirit will be rewarded. I know all the people you've helped out and still continue to help. Thank you, I'm one of them. God bless you

  3. From Charlotte -

    We aren't old-we are mature individuals with mature thoughts, and though our bodies are more mature than we like to think, we will move ever onward (as long as we can walk)

  4. please don't dwell on aging. Look forward to that second childhood. Maybe all these wrinkles just iron themselves out. who knows?

  5. From Steve -


    You took a difficult issue and expressed it in a way I found myself saying, “That’s how I feel”. I agree with your statement that “Regardless of the amount of years I may accumulate I shall not be old until not only my strength is gone but my mind no longer allows me to think myself young.” We are a thinking/doing species. As long as I can keep doing and/or thinking about doing I will feel young. I think as long as I can ride my bike I’ll be young. Then I’ll have the memories of my rides with Bonnie

  6. Evelyn, your words really struck a chord with me. We don't feel old, but we know these bodies are changing, and we need to be realistic about this process if we want to support our still-active minds.
    I found that in one respect becoming my age is very liberating - I say what I think without worrying too much if I look foolish to younger people.
    I know what you mean about broken dreams, and I am working to accept this aspect of life. If I still hope to be all that I can, I need to let go of "what might have been."
    You are a terrific thinker and writer, Evelyn