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What Would Muriel Do?

I’ve been thinking about my friend Muriel.  For thirty years, we were the best of friends, even though she is fourteen years older than I am. We always seemed to be able to solve each other’s problems.

Over the past few years, she hasn’t done so well. She has lost her husband of more than fifty years.  I just heard through a mutual friend that she is having short-term memory problems, and needs an aide to help her read her mail.

I have a copy of an essay that Muriel wrote about how she felt about being in her 70’s.   She started the decade with a white-water rafting trip in the Grand Canyon. But she was feeling less adventurous as the years went by.  She wrote about how much she enjoyed exercising and  the memoir-writing classes she taught.  She wrote about losing friends and the looming “statistical scoreboard.”  But she was happy.

Now, I am  in my seventies, feeling less immortal, and wondering what I’ll be like in fourteen years.  But I am still asking myself, “What Would Muriel Do?


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A good act to follow. It's not always easy to be as spry as we might like, but as we get older we can do the best with what we've been given by way of resources and health. Every Blessing for the next more than fourteen years.


I'm 67, and a couple of years ago when I was at my Dr.'s office for a checkup, I had a new (young) nurse practitioner. After I hopped up on the table, she said, "My you're spry." While I'm sure she meant it as a compliment, my immediate reaction was the same as yours: "spry" is something you say about old people, and I don't consider myself old.

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