Too Old To Dream?

by Lucy Lee Jones on July 12, 2010

in Aging, Dreams, Philosophy, Reflection

In the mid-thirties, The Night Is Young, a movie with Nelson Eddy and Irene Dunne, featured the song “When I Grow Too Old To Dream.” Most of you reading this will remember that song. I was a mere babe in arms when it came out, but I know the song from having heard it over the years by various artists.

That song floated through my thoughts the other day, and I decided Romberg and Hammerstein had those words all wrong!

The textbook out of which I teach a Human Development course at the college categorizes the “young old” as 65 to 74, the “old old” as 75 to 84 and the “oldest old” as 85 and above. I won’t discuss my calendar age here, although I do admit to being over 65! In terms of the great site Real Age my physical age is about 10 years younger than my calendar age. Another fascinating site is Living to 100 where I learned that based on my health and lifestyle, I will live to 104, and with a couple minor changes, I could increase that to 108.

So do you think I am too old to dream? Are any of us ever too old to dream?

I don’t intend to stop dreaming until they sprinkle my ashes over the ocean. And who knows? Maybe I won’t stop dreaming even after that.

Please! Let us not stop dreaming, just because we think we might be “too old to dream.” The world is full of dreams just waiting for someone with our talents, our openness, our persistence, our love – no matter our age!

A hui hou!


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Mahalo! (Thank you!)

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kate Norris July 12, 2010 at 10:00 am

I think you will get a lot of people reading this blog saying this but HELL NO, you’re NEVER too old to dream. You are the perfect of example of not letting age stop you from anything. I recently may a very tiny step towards crone-hood. And When I think about aging I think I want to be Lucy when I grow up. You never seem to lose you passion for life and in a large part that is because you never stop dreaming, and more importantly you never stop believing you can reach those dreams.

2 Lucy Lee Jones July 12, 2010 at 10:15 am

Oh, Kate! You brought tears to my eyes! Working with college students has been the primary factor in never allowing myself to be “elderly” but to be among the “young old!” 🙂 I’m full-time faculty for UH-HCC and I love it. When summer comes, I can tell the difference in my attitude because I’m not around my students! You were certainly a part of that for me at UA! I think everyone should make a rendezvous here in Hawaii sometime! Aloha nui loa!

3 Sonia (foodiesleuth) July 12, 2010 at 11:15 am

I agree with Kate above….HELL, NO….
In age I’m way over the hump between ‘young old’ and ‘old old’ and fast reaching the ‘old old’ mark…. but in my mind I’m still very young and think I can still do anything I set my mind to do….
I still have dreams of things I wan to accomplish…..and my list of ‘To Try’ recipes and other things I want to accomplish is too long for me to stop now….

4 Lucy Lee Jones July 12, 2010 at 11:20 am

Kate was one of my students at the University of Arizona in Tucson when I was there. She has known me many years and has seen me get “younger” every year. 🙂 Like you, I have too many recipes to try, too many more books to write, too much traveling to do. My great grandmother was a role model for me. She used to tell me that she would rather “wear out than rust out.” It’s an old saying, but a true one for those of us who are on the cusp of those “old” categories! I think more and more people are aging slower and slower, and enjoying it more!

5 Sonia (foodiesleuth) July 12, 2010 at 11:31 am

AMEN……….Mine seems to be a matriarchal family – on both sides….My Cuban grandmother lived to be 94 and was active everyd ay in her life….my American grandmother died at 88 and was the same – we used to say her middle name was Go… – my mom died just before reaching 94….and my American Great-grandmother was also in her 90’s…. So if I follow in their genetic footsteps, I too might live a few more years and don’t plan to just sit and vegetate… 😉

The men don’t seem to last as long for some reason…

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