May is “Older Americans” month, and the theme for 2012 is “It’s never too late to play”. Today happens to be my mother’s 80th birthday, but she is too busy to “play”. She is the CFO of a 40-year old family-owned business, and she is one busy woman. My father is just as busy as the CEO. My parents are a true inspiration to me, and in honor of “Older Americans” month, I would like to say thank you to both of them. Beyond my parents, I would like to say thank you to all “Older Americans”. Thank you for helping to make this country a great place to live.
I asked my mother if turning 80 has changed her outlook on the concept of retiring. She gave the same response as always – “I plan to die at my desk”. However, she has no intentions of dying before she is at least 100. In her eyes, working is what keeps her feeling youthful. Even though she can afford to retire very comfortably, she views retirement as the equivalent of her downfall from “boredom”, as she puts it.
For many years, I tried to convince my parents to retire and enjoy life. Eventually, I realized that they are enjoying life! If running their business makes them happy, who am I to argue? The definition of “play” is a personal one, I suppose. I wonder how many other 80-year old Americans are still working because they enjoy it, and not because they need to for financial reasons.
To all “Older Americans, thank you for all the contributions you have made to this great Country, which is only great because of those with wisdom and courage, strength and determination to overcome adversity and to pave the way for the youth of America to be stronger.
Happy Birthday, Mom! You are a constant inspiration to me.