The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

Life At Sixty

by Dessa Rodefferm Quill Publisher/Owner

14 March 2007

It doesn't seem too long ago that I was just a teenager, enjoying all the pleasures of living at home with my parents, and seeing the world as a perfect place.

I was born two years after World War II had ended and people were celebrating a country that entertained patriotism, honored the flag, and prayed to the Heavenly Father who sustained and comforted them through the strain of war and separation.

Families knew the need for hard work, family togetherness, and worship, and tried to bring good values into the homes and directions in our lives. The television was not the center of our life, the family table was.

I remember what a joy it was to be seated around the table visiting with mom and dad about the day and her serving up some fresh fried chicken or a pot roast with potatoes and carrots.

And then, there were those in our community that you looked up to for their stature.

People who served on town boards, school boards, and church and community boards in a spirit of cooperation, or it seemed that way to me.

Politicians were respected and supported for their serving in office and focused on what was best for our communities rather than fighting over issues to get their own way. There didn't seem to be so much business conducted outside public meetings.

When I was young our families traveled more to visit our grandparents and other relatives, and though we had less, it seemed like we had more in so many ways.

Yesterday, I reached my parent's age of sixty. I dreaded it when they were nearing that age where they would need to retire because they were sooo old they couldn't do the things they use to do.

Now sixty seems only a number, or maybe middle age as people live on into a hundred. I read that our bodies were made to live to 120 if we only would take care of them.

I admit, sixty slipped up on me, as every ten seems to do, but I have to agree with Shirley, my Editor, that you must "Count your blessings, not your tears, Count your friends and not the years."

I have found it in my six children, who had protested and squirmed and tried me whenever they could, and yet they continue to amaze me with their thoughtfulness.

Not only did they send daily gifts on my cruise last week to remind me they were thinking of me, but they also sent a dozen roses to the office yesterday with a note from each of the six, telling me why a particular word comes to their mind when they think of me and why they thought of it. I also received a phone call from each one, was sung to by four of my 15 grandchildren, and friends and office crew let me know that sixty years of the good life in America with family and friends is a good thing to celebrate.