After several delays, gate changes and confusion in the Fort Lauderdale airport, I sat down next to a older lady who explained she was going home to the Cape after bringing her great granddaughter back home to Florida. She explained that her husband would pick her up, now in the middle of the night and they'd drive free of traffic back home to have a lovely day together. She said she couldn't stand to be away from him for another day. It was clear to me that this woman was completely fascinated by her life, her family and the love she and her husband shared. I was eager to learn about her, but as it went, there were more delays, gate changes and confusion.
As luck would have it, once the airline established a the gate we would depart from and the boarding process, this angel found her way back to me. She said she wanted to lean against the post because she was just so tired. I stood next to her and helped her along as we moved toward our seats and the universe granted me the amazing gift of sitting beside her on our flight back to Boston. Inside, I was ecstatic.
The lovely older lady told me that her name was Famie, short for Ufamia (an Italian name) she was 85 and a half (she didn't look a day over 65 nor act it), had lived on the cape for most of her life and her family, the aforementioned husband, 2 sons, 6 grand babies and 4 great grand babies meant absolutely everything to her. She proceeded to use her iPhone to show me pictures of the eldest great granddaughter that was just visiting, a myriad of other grand/great grandchildren and her sons and her beautiful backyard pond. She told me she'd be buried right there in her favorite spot in her garden.
Piotrek, as he often does, was quietly listening and occasionally engaging in the conversation and piped in here and asked, "What's your secret to life?" She replied thoughtfully, "Just remember life is good. Once you've got that, you'll be happy."
Famie then told me how she still had many things in life that she wanted to do, one of which was zip lining in Costa Rica, though she admitted she was scared of how to stop! I shared my zip lining experience with her and I am fairly certain, she will soon be trying zip lining for herself! She then told me about how her youngest great grandchild once touched her face and asked her what her wrinkles were. She told her, I've earned all my wrinkles over the years. The young child squealed and told her she loved every "crinkle". The child still touches her face and is fascinated by the years, stories and life told upon her great grandmother's face.
Meeting Famie captivated me. I was so drawn to the vitality that this 85 and a half year old had for life. She is still actively and consciously living the life she wants to live at 85. I admire her lightness and her zest for life and truly aspire to be just like Famie someday.
How many of us can say the same?
And with far fewer candles on our birthday cakes, we've got a lot more life ahead. So I ask myself and each of you, to think about how you would live your ideal life.
And then do it.
Starting today, live your ideal life.