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Some people are old at 18 and some are young at 90 – Yoko Ono

We cannot combat the forces of nature that are beyond our control and all the changes that come with it. The only thing that lies within our capabilities is to magnify and feel the positive aspect of all the circumstances that life puts us through. Among all the issues being discussed and addressed, ageing is one. There are always ample ways to solve any type of problem; the question is if you are able to make the right choice and implement them the right way that will guarantee happiness.
For most of us, our life as expected follows the following stages:
Birth – The years till when one starts attending school are one of best years
Student life – School, College and may be beyond, where it is all about getting the best grades
Job – A cut throat competitive world where you have to be the best to succeed
Marriage – One is expected to be married and tart a responsible life by a certain age
Children – Giving birth to a child or children is the expected norm
Parent – This is where your life takes a turn and you become dedicated to your off springs
Grandparent – Your life is then taken over by your grandchildren and your dedication to continue saving for them and your children.
In all these stages, most of ushardly have any time to think of ourselves. Our life can be overshadowed by one expectation after another and even if we want to enjoy life, some of us are bound by the way we have seen everyone live or by our own self-created issues. Through all these, we also undergo the ageing process. Some tend to age gracefully, some not so. Some tend to live their lives to the fullest, some shrouded in frustration, some oblivious to everything except a better life for their children and grandchildren.
In a society where we all mostly live and die for our family, are we ready to live for ourselves? Once children are well settled or even if not, do parents deserve a rewarding life wherein they can re-engage, re-explore or re–live their dreams? If 89 year old Phoolmani Rai can start learning Tai Chi (a Chinese martial art form), Rupa Thapa can want to learn athak in her 60s, Santosh Murarka can start learning using social media at 72 years, when Dev Rana in his 60s can still be a rock musician, if Dorji Tsering Sherpa who is 60 can rise above the pain of losing a loved one to run SKY Memorial Foundation n memory of his daughter and other victims of a plane crash, or when we come across elders who are living their life to the fullest then yes, it is possible to dedicate some time to your dreams and yourself.

All one needs to enjoy their life, is support from their family besides of course, oneself. If parents can dedicate their lives in making their children’s as comfortable as possible or help in fulfilling their dreams then it should be vice versa as well. We need a growing culture where, we now need to start moving from just focusing on saving, to also
enjoying the little joys in life! There is no harm in treating yourself and following your dreams like Megh Rai who enjoys following her passion of cooking, travelling and painting even in her 60s . Above all, there is no greater happiness for a child to do something to make their parents happy as in the case of Rafael Poudel, who encouraged his mother Radha Poudel to fulfill her dream of singing for a radio station at the age of 55.
You live only once – it is never too late to take a step back, review how you have been living and re–engage n something you used to love doing, re–explore new interests or re–live your life. After all, we all want have a smile on our faces when we look back at how we have lived!
*The individuals mentioned are or have been involved in the activities/ services of Bihani Social Venture.
Bihani is a social venture born out of the need to create a positive outlook to life and living meaningfully with focus on individuals above fifty years of age (but not restricted to it) who want to re- engage, re – explore and re – live a new beginning or create a rewarding second half of their lives.
www.bihani.com.np /www.facebook.com/bihanisocialventure/ www.twitter.com/bihaninepal, 00977-9813228579.

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