Let’s face it, life in 300 sq. feet does not allow for a lot of library space. Generally our book modus operandi is to identify a good author, scour ebay for good buys, pay no more than $2.00 (including shipping) for a paperback and when we’re done reading it, it goes into the bag and eventually finds its way to a local thrift shop. It’s true that I’m more apt to hang on to a good book (or series) since I don’t mind re-reading a treasure, but our rotating book stock plan works pretty well. Occasionally I’ll get a book from a SOWER friend that once read needs to be passed on to another SOWER. Books by Karen Kingsbury, Tracie Peterson, Francine Rivers, or Jan Karon rotate around the SOWER ladies with great ease. The tradition is to read it, sign the cover and then pass it on. Recently, though, I was “loaned” a very precious book (really just more than a booklet) called I Talk to Myself a Lot by Audre Pitts.
As you can see, it’s been around for a while.
Virtually every page shows signs of repair.
And the list of folks who have read it inside the front cover?
Now there’s a who’s who list of SOWER ladies!
This little book was filled with sweet vignettes of the foibles of aging. With chapter titles like
- I’m Always Getting Lost
- I Know I Put It Somewhere
- Have I Told You This Before?
I knew it would be a book that would truly speak to me! Here’s my favorite –
Growing Up or Growing Old?
Am I growing up – or just growing old?
Growing old sometimes means:
Aches and pains,
forgetting more and more,
gradually losing family and old friends,
moving to smaller quarters
and giving up cherished belongings,
repeating myself more often.
But growing up means:
speaking to someone instead of turning a cold shoulder
listening with kindness (if not intense interest) to an anecdote I’ve heard so often I could tell it better myself.
smiling – even when I feel like glowering,
doing something for someone without telling anyone about it (It’s such a temptation to let people know how nice I am.),
making friends instead of enemies,
saying I’m sorry when I really am, but don’t want to admit it,
appreciating others as much as I think they should appreciate me,
letting someone behind me (who is in a hurry) go ahead of me at the grocery check-out. (That isn’t easy!)
Growing up means growing more kind, more friendly, more thoughtful, more generous, more compassionate, more cheerful, and more emotionally secure.
I can’t help growing old – the step is slowing and the wrinkles are showing, but God, give me grace (I need it) to grow up along with it.
Because growing up will probably mean the difference between happiness and bitterness while I am growing older. I do not want to be bitter. Bitter people are lonely people – and very unhappy people. Nor do I want to remain an emotional adolescent all my life.
As I older grow,
May I be childlike
In my love for Thee,
But never childish
In my actions toward others.
Keep my spirit young, God,
But help me to accept my years,
Knowing that every age
Has its own rewards.
What a precious little book! I’m delighted to sign the cover myself and pass it along! I’m sure it will bless the next SOWER (or anyone) who might just talk to themselves a lot!