For the last three months I have dreaded the day coming on Saturday.  Usually, I don’t mind a birthday because once someone has battled cancer, a birthday is a good thing.  However, this year I have dreaded entering a new decade. Curious as to why I must be feeling this way, I finally talked to the social director at the nursing home where I volunteer.  She was free of charge and graciously took time with me.

Her first question actually answered my question.  She asked, “Do you feel that you have accomplished goals you set out for yourself?”  My answer actually may sound arrogant, but, yes, I have met most of my realistic goals. Realistic is the key word.

So, I am content to stay here a little longer and see what lies ahead.  One day at a time, is the goal.  I feel no anxiety over what is unfinished.  The dread of growing older is the looming cloud of poor health.  My eyesight is worrisome but I don’t dwell on it.  Once in a while it is actually a positive because I can honestly say, “Oh, I didn’t see that.”  I have a few friends at church who will quietly read things to me in a power point presentation and friends who volunteer to read a menu to me without making me feel like a burden.  Riding public transportation is not bad at all.  I have time. Those are good things.

As my endurance has changed, so have God’s assignments.  Now I write a blog instead of teaching a Sunday school class.  Now I encourage the grandchildren instead of teaching a room of 100+ children in a Children’s Church.  Now I sing to the Lord with my little granddaughter because she likes to sing “Rolled Away” and “I May Never March in the Infantry” instead of church choir.  I didn’t have time when I was younger and working 40 hours a week.

A lingering promise God gave me years ago was true then and true today:  “. . .as thy days, so shall thy strength be.”  Deuteronomy 33:25



  1. Glenda

    Karyl, you put me to shame with your energy and enthusiasm for everything and everyone around you! I am fighting back tears right now, just a slight little pity party, because my grandchildren are all 1500 miles away, but I realize that I am SO blessed that we have a great relationship, as I know many people who do not enjoy that kind of thing with their families. My eyesight is all right, but I am battling hearing loss, and I hope people do not tire of my asking them to repeat what they have said. My mother had the same type of hearing difficulty, and she just finally stopped going out in public except for doctors’ appointments and such. Even a hearing aid did not serve her adequately, as it picked up background noises that drowned out what she was trying to hear. All this to say that you are an inspiration to many of us!!! God has a great reason—probably more than one—for leaving you here, and I know you are continuing to fulfill His plan for your life! Keep on keeping on, my Friend! I have been a septuagenarian for a month today, and I hope that others are being encouraged by me in some way! I always say, and I probably should not say this since I’m a diabetic, as long as there is cake and ice cream, I’ll keep having birthdays gladly! Allow me to wish you an early Happy Birthday! 🙂

  2. You encourage me.

    Today is Terry’s 70th birthday. I’ll have to share this with him.

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