Downsizing is a Young Person’s Game

Unless you have a youthful spouse and a couple of willing teens, don’t do it

Photo by Michal Balog on Unsplash

“Where in the world did we get all this stuff and why?” We’ve asked ourselves this question many times since moving became necessary, four times. If you have ever downsized, you know exactly what I mean. If you haven’t, beware.

First, we lived in a four-bedroom house where we had resided for 19 years and then moved to a two-bedroom apartment with a small storage cage. After that, gluttons for punishment, we went from that apartment building to another but stayed there only a year.

In some ways, I wish the story ended there but for a number of convoluted reasons, we are now back in a two-bedroom apartment. Thanks to my voracious packer-unpacker spouse, we have some semblance of normalcy and are doing our best to just stay in the present. Do we dare say “no more moves?”

A little less startling and a little closer to home, I recently saw an octogenarian in a road race, using a rolling walker for stability. The President of the United States will hit 80 by the end of his first term and who knows how old is Mick Jagger (78, of course).

I don’t buy the common phrase, “age is just a number” but I do believe that by avoiding falls and drunken drivers, one could keep going based on sheer will because, as the hiker made clear, “eighty percent of it is mental grit.” Pain makes it more difficult but not impossible

It calls for lowering expectations, focusing on the two cats wandering from room-to-room, or managing the bird feeders hanging off the balcony. Personally, I enjoy finding out the time of sunrise or moonrise so I can be ready, looking out our east window, for amazing skies.

I plan to spend my eighties living. Is that too simplistic? Well, whatever, as the teens say.

Author: Words From Warren

Retired United Church of Christ clergy person; who partners with and backs up The Rev. Dr. Carla Jean Bailey, Senior Minister at Pilgrim UCC Chuch in Duluth, Minnesota; I am a very progressive Democrat; and I love felines.

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