Hopscotching into retirement  http://www.bizrate.com/hopscotch-game/

Hopscotching into retirement http://www.bizrate.com/hopscotch-game/

When visiting two of my grandchildren the other day, I was thrilled with their invitation to join them in a game of Hopscotch and became even more puffed up when they were impressed that I knew how to play (unlike their electronic games). Though I had recently noticed I was more often walking up stairs rather than running up them as I did a few years ago, I had not equated that with an inability to play Hopscotch. Consequently the inflated spirit I felt was largely deflated, when I couldn’t duplicate my grandchildren’s bounce from block to block.

That deflation changed again as our five year old came over and took my hand, and said, “Come on, Grandmom, I’ll show you how.” Now the test began: Do I get insulted that she thinks I’ve forgotten how to play, do I quit playing or do I demonstrate the wisdom gained during the years the bounce in my bones was dissipating? I immediately thought, “QUIT,” but then a stronger more accepting idea crept into my brain, and I held her hand.

As she guided me through the game—despite my crunching knees—I realized how many more important things there are in life than winning a game. The feel of her hand in mine and her obvious concern that Grandmom makes it through this maze, created a new bond between us. She felt so very grown up, and I felt blessed to have this enjoyable moment with her.

We never know when a special happening will come our way, but when we allow our life experiences to teach us, we are more likely to catch a glimpse of new understandings and attitudes, and to act on them. Despite all of our efforts to exercise and eat healthfully, our bones will likely start to creak and be sore, but our brains and our hearts don’t have to get that way. The secret to being delighted with new events is to apply the wisdom we have acquired through our joys and setbacks to every possible circumstance.

I don’t know if Ponce DeLeon really found that Fountain in St. Augustine, but we don’t need it! We can keep an important part of our youth with a steadfast determination to remain open to opportunities—even if our knees do creek! So, if you or your partner tends to get creaky or cranky, consider playing hopscotch

In case you have forgotten how to play the game, you’ll find directions on the Internet, courtesy of Wikipedia. Also, not so surprisingly, you’ll also find a number of sites for Internet games called Hopscotch. Enjoy!

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