Culture

‘I Want To Age Like Sea Glass’

By Bernie Bell

Recently, I hit a low.  The world, people, my general state of mankiness, got on top of me.

I decided to take steps. One of which, was not to be on the computer, at all, for – maybe  a week, and see how I got on.

I was placing my “F*** Off – I’m not here” notice, on the machine,  when it went ‘bing bong’, and a message appeared from me old mate Philip – nearly 50 years of friendship – he lives in Japan.  We haven’t seen each other for 20 years. But…it’s still there.

I hadn’t said anything to him about how I’ve been lately – yet, on the day that I hit a real low – he sent this………….

‘I want to age like sea glass’

By Bernadette Noll

I want to age like sea glass. Smoothed by tides, not broken. I want the currents of life to toss me around, shake me up and leave me feeling washed clean. I want my hard edges to soften as the years pass — made not weak, but supple. I want to ride the waves, go with the flow, feel the impact of the surging tides rolling in and out.

When I am thrown against the shore and caught between the rocks and a hard place, I want to rest there until I can find the strength to do what is next. Not stuck — just waiting, pondering, feeling what it feels like to pause. And when I am ready, I will catch a wave and let it carry me along to the next place that I am supposed to be.

I want to be picked up on occasion by an unsuspected soul and carried along — just for the connection, just for the sake of appreciation and wonder. And with each encounter, new possibilities of collaboration are presented, and new ideas are born.

I want to age like sea glass so that when people see the old woman I’ll become, they’ll embrace all that I am. They’ll marvel at my exquisite nature, hold me gently in their hands and be awed by my well-earned patina. Neither flashy nor dull, just the right luster. And they’ll wonder, if just for a second, what it is exactly I am made of and how I got to be in this very here and now. And we’ll both feel lucky to realize, once again, that we have landed in that perfectly right place at that profoundly right time.

I want to age like sea glass. I want to enjoy the journey and let my preciousness be, not in spite of the impacts of life, but because of them.”

I  broke my self-imposed rule about the computer, to thank him, and answered him, thus…….

“But I’m not aging like sea glass.  What am I ageing like?  Like something – broken, crumpled.  Then, I thought – a piece of rusty old metal.  To some, including myself, a piece of rusty old metal can be a fine thing. We bring them home from beaches and place them around and in the house – one bit I really like is in the hall …..

A rusty piece of metal has a solid, sound core. Bits are flaking off it, but it has a sound core. Eventually, it will rust away, but that’s just how it goes.

So – yes, not like sea glass – but like rusty old metal. That’ll do for me.  Those that appreciate me, will do so, for what I am. And, like the song says,  for what I am – I make no excuses! “

I hope my reader, can, and will, do the same – if it helps.

3 replies »

  1. Bernie. What a wonderful outlook to have, me I’m a bit like you general ‘decrepitude and failing systems’, LOL. But still trying to grow old ‘disgracefully’!!!!

    • There’s a lot to be said for growing old disgracefully – and, as soon as I am able, and restrictions are lifted, and I can go out and dance again, I WILL DO SO!
      Roll on next years Blues Fest.

  2. What a lovely piece of writing about both sea glass (a favourite thing of mine) and rust (another favourite thing of mine). I wish I could age as beautifully as either of them. I do age disgracefully for sure!

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