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Still Swinging

Who says?

I mean really, when it comes to being "too old," who says what that age that is?

Eric Erickson, who took his clues from Sigmund Freud, documented in his 8 stages of growth that as we turn 55 and 65 we become stagnant, self-absorbed, and live a life of despair. Author Henry David Thoreau observed, "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them."

This morning I went for my usual walk in the hills near my home. As I passed a park I noticed five women playing softball. Closer examination showed these were not young women, in fact their average age was over 65. I watched in amazement for a moment and smiled to myself as I walked on.

About 300 yards later, I turned around as my curiosity peaked and the urge to inquire was too great to resist. The ladies told me of a group of over 4,000 women who are all over 60 and they compete against other women's softball teams across America and Canada.

I asked if I could take a photo and write about them in my blog. They generously offered to loan me a glove and let me practice with them. I was so pleased and honored I dove right in, shagging balls and I was even allowed to bat a few. I was amazed at how much I retained from my youth as I was able to connect with the pitches and catch more than I missed. After about an hour I was breathing heavy and my energy was spent. Even though I was the youngest on the filed, I bowed out of the offer and turned for home when they all ran laps around the bases.

Hours later I'm still smiling. Sore. But smiling. Those ladies may have silver in their hair but their hearts are young, their smiles genuine, and they are definitely still swinging.

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