01 May It’s All About Love
is author of the best-selling book, “Hot Chocolate for Seniors”(winner of national & international awards); winner of Gold Halo Award from the So. California Motion Picture Council for Outstanding Literary Achievement; winner of First Place Excellence in Journalism Award (SPJ –Southern CA); Town & Gown “Phenomenal Woman” Award; former television host & KSPA radio host of “Senior Living at its Best with Jan Fowler”; speaker, contributing author for “Savvy Women Revving Up for Success”; founder of Starburst Inspirations, Inc. 501(c) (3) nonprofit which supports Redlands Drug Court. www.janfowler.com. Jan welcomes feedback and comments about her columns and invites you to leave her a message on her website.
by Jan Fowler
“You’ve got to dance like there’s nobody watching,
Love like you’ll never be hurt,
Sing like there’s nobody listening,
And live like it’s heaven on earth.”
William W. Purkey
“He’s 93, she’s 89, and they say ‘I do” reads the “Never too Late” headline above the newspaper picture of a glowing bride in white lace being kissed by her groom at their recent wedding ceremony. Gordon and Beverly—this very happy couple—met after they both moved into the same retirement home. I always love to hear and read about couples who are finding love and romance in their senior years. Such blissful unions bless our world with storybook wonder, and yet these stories really do occur in real life all the time. Read on…
Charles met Phyllis when he purchased her townhouse seven years ago, Marilyn met Hank at an afternoon holiday dance held at their local senior center, and Louise connected with Ed when she lingered long enough to buy his CD after feeling swept away by his guitar performance at an outdoor summer concert. All three of these couples have been together ever since.
Such dreams come true for millions of single seniors every single day and you too could be one of them. I was!
Our need for human connection, attention, and affection does not change as we age. As a matter of fact, when it comes to our basic need for love and companionship, we are all the same age inside, regardless of the number of years we’ve lived. Besides which, we are all living longer lives, thanks to improved diet and exercise. And no one should be alone because loneliness is detrimental to our physical, mental, and emotional health. Loneliness shortens the lifespan, weakens the immune system, increases the risk for heart attack and stroke, causes depression, and even contributes to the onset of dementia. Whereas those who remain socially connected live longer and healthier lives!
How to meet? The truth is that each day holds infinite opportunities to make new acquaintances. We meet people everywhere we go just by going through the motions of daily living, and by doing the things that capture our interest. However, we must remain open to “chance meetings” by smiling, making eye contact, and often being the first to say hello to an approachable stranger.
Love begins with a question, a need, or a simple connection. “What do you think of this?” is an easy enough question to ask of an attractive person who catches our eye and who appears to be open. In fact, countless opportunities to strike up conversations with others pop up in the course of any ordinary day, be it in a cafeteria line, a sporting goods store, a Home Depot, food market, or even a fitness center. And by the time we become seniors, we’ve already developed a pretty good intuition about whether a person is safe or not, besides which we usually feel more at ease with ourselves and others. But we may still have to force ourselves to get out, go places, and cast a wider net.
I consider myself blessed to have met my dear David in a waltz and rumba dance class—on a very ordinary Tuesday afternoon, as a matter of fact—at a local senior center. That was ten years ago, and the rest is now history because we’ve been together ever since. But I do recall what a stretch it was for me at the time, and how difficult and awkward it felt to step outside my comfort zone. Oh, how I dreaded venturing out on my own and going to unfamiliar places, yet that day I forced myself to pay attention to the no-nonsense voice of my inner guide, which shouted, “Jan you must get out of the house and go somewhere!”
So now I can honestly describe from personal experience that it felt like pure magic to have lonely days and empty nights suddenly transformed into full rich happy ones. Having someone special close at hand to talk to, go places with, and to share hopes and dreams for the future have been miraculous life-changing events for me. In addition to which, having someone to give to each day fills me with ongoing purpose, joy, and happiness.
So if you happen to be seeking a romantic connection, please remember that people meet potential mates everywhere they go, be it on a bus excursion filled with happy smiling people all headed to the same destination, in a ukulele class, even while waiting for luggage at baggage claim.
My new book, “Hot Chocolate for Senior Romance ~ How Sweet It Is!” How, When, and Where Couples Found Love in Later Life has finally been released, and my wish is that it may spark new hope about the endless possibilities for your own life. Remember, romance knows no age limits!
Now Available: Hot Chocolate for Senior Romance ~ How Sweet It Is!
How, When, and Where Couples Found Love in Later Life
Of course the books are available at B & N, Amazon, etc., but if you want an autographed copy you must order through my website at http://www.janfowler.com. (Retail price is $14.95. )