Today’s Parable: My Name is Rose…

(Thanks Aunt Barbara for the reminder!)

The first day of  school our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to  know someone we didn’t already know. I stood up to look around when a  gentle hand touched my shoulder.

I turned around to find  a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up  her entire being.

She said, ‘Hi handsome. My name is  Rose. I’m eighty-seven years old. Can I give you a  hug?’

I laughed and enthusiastically responded, ‘Of  course you may!’ and she gave me a giant squeeze.

‘Why  are you in college at such a young, innocent age?’ I  asked.

She jokingly replied, ‘I’m here to meet a rich  husband, get married, and have a couple of kids…’

‘No  seriously,’ I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be  taking on this challenge at her age.

‘I always dreamed of  having a college education and now I’m getting one!’ she told  me.

After class we walked to the student union building  and shared a chocolate milkshake.

We became instant  friends.. Every day for the next three months we would leave class  together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening to this  ‘time machine’ as she shared her wisdom and experience with  me…

Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus  icon and she easily made friends wherever she went.. She loved to  dress up and she reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the  other students. She was living it up.

At the end of the  semester we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet. I’ll never  forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium.. As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her  three by five cards on the floor.

Frustrated and a little  embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said, ‘I’m sorry  I’m so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing  me! I’ll never get my speech back in order so let me just tell you  what I know.’

As we laughed she cleared her throat and  began, ‘ We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old  because we stop playing.

There are only four secrets to  staying young, being happy, and achieving success. You have to laugh  and find humor every day… You’ve got to have a dream.. When you lose  your dreams, you die.

We have so many people walking  around who are dead and don’t even know it!

There is a  huge difference between growing older and growing up.

If  you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don’t  do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am  eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn eighty-eight.

Anybody can grow  older. That doesn’t take any talent or ability. The idea is to grow up  by always finding opportunity in change. Have no regrets.

The elderly usually don’t have regrets for what  we did, but rather for things we did not do.. The only people who fear  death are those with regrets.’

She concluded her speech  by courageously singing ‘The Rose..’

She challenged each  of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily lives At the  year’s end Rose finished the college degree she had begun all  those years ago.

One week after graduation Rose died  peacefully in her sleep.

Over two thousand college  students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who  taught by example that it’s never too late to be all you can possibly  be.

When you finish reading this, please send this  peaceful word of advice to your friends and family, they’ll really  enjoy it!

These words have been passed along in loving  memory of ROSE.

About PoiPriestess

Isa “GlitterGirl” Isaacs has been a professional fire dancer and instructor since 2002 when she established her first flow arts education company, Temple of Poi, the premier poi school in the world. Since then, she has been working as a Priestess of Poi, teaching the ways of flow as a lifestyle choice. More details can be found on the about page on this site.