As a woman of 107, I can’t say aging has been a delightful experience. I must have several young men on hand at all times just to do the basics; drive me to the male review, open my pill bottles, and remind me of what I was attempting to do but forgot.

Despite its obvious limitations, aging comes with a delicious set of perks that cannot be realized in one’s youth. The greatest of these is the gift of wisdom. All the trials and rewards of life filter into an easy, concise philosophy. Situations and people are put into their proper light.

I’m dictating the perks of aging to Lance.  Please excuse any typing errors, as he wasn’t hired for this type of skill set:

1. You no longer take any BS from anyone.

Acquaintances with bloated ego’s spewing self-praise are quickly eliminated and replaced by true friends and allies. You’ve got no time for nonsense and no patience for unnecessary drama. Age brings discernment, and quickly cuts out all people and situations that don’t bring joy, peace of mind or inspiration. You’ve learned the true meaning of the word “friend” and associate with grounded, healthy like-minded individuals who support your goals and share your values.

2. You no longer stress over what’s not important.

The stuff you thought was oh-so-important in your youth has given way to seeing the Big Picture. You’ve won enough battles to know what’s worth fighting for, and lost enough battles to know you’ll survive life’s daily challenges. In this divine realization, all of life takes its proper proportion.

3. Priorities change for the better.

What you neglected to see as valuable in your youth is all that remains in sight when older. The simple pleasures of being alive become more important that the material markers you sought. You gain the ability to see what’s of real worth, from what isn’t. In that supreme moment of clarity, all of life rejoices as you’re finally living fully in the awareness of gratitude for each moment.

4. You know what you want (and what you don’t want).

With age comes clarity. You know what you want and you know what you don’t want. Bravo! You’re at the counterpoint of your life. You’ve figured out your “design” for life, friendship, career, and romance… and will settle for nothing less than what make your heart sing.

5. Lovers take their rightful positions.

You’ve loved and been loved. You’ve won and lost at the gaming table of love, having immersed yourself in ecstasy and surviving the heartache of loss. In that sacred journey, you’ve come full circle to ‘being in agreement’ with yourself. Lovers take their rightful position as a welcome addition to an already complete life. Love is a case of want, not need.

It takes time to get to these understandings, but the payoff is fantastic. Though I may have arrived a little late, like Cinderella on “Italian time” five minutes before midnight, I’m here now. At the biggest and most important Grand Ball ever. My life. Shot through this angle of this lens, the precious perks of aging outweigh the benefits I knew in youth.