My oldest returned to school this week, and one thing we always make time for as we rush out the front door is a good ol’ classic ‘first day’ photograph! Some of our favorites include signs that detail what grade you’re going into, what you want to be when you grow up, and more. It’s adorable and I always love to see my friends’ children growing up and changing as they hold their signs.
That’s why I smiled so big when I saw the Facebook post I’m about to show you.
Village on the Park, a retirement facility in Oklahoma City recently decided to get in on the ‘first day’ trend with a series of ‘First Day of the Rest of My Life’ photos of some of their residents. Click through all of them: I guarantee you will smile.
“Everyone is posting ‘First Day of School’ pictures and Village on the Park wanted to be part of the fun! These beautiful ‘Seniors’ are living their BEST life and we can learn from their wisdom everyday!”
The residents held up signs with their name, graduating class, age, and what their goal is for the coming year. While many of them seemed to want to maintain their health or continue living this year, some of them were dreaming even bigger. Leon, a 91-year-old man, said that he wants to ride a horse this year! Paul, 90, said he wants to run away and buy a farm in Oregon. I love it.
The pictures that warmed my heart the most were the ones like Margaret, 88, who said she wants to “be a blessing to others,” and Betty, 91, who wants to “be happy”.
The thing that I find the most touching about these pictures is that, by and large, what people want as they age is just the simplicity of another day… more time, the ability to love others and be loved, to spend time doing things that make them happy.
Another thing that I love about this post is that, under so many of the pictures, people have commented about how they can make these residents’ dreams come true. For example, remember Leon, who wants to ride a horse this year? A woman named Ashley at Silver Wind Stables commented that they would love to make his dream come true- and that they could even bring a horse to him! How special is that?
This album reminds me that life doesn’t end when we hit a certain age. We are still the same people we have always been inside… just with a lot more perspective. I am grateful that Village on the Park gave us a glimpse into the lives of these special people!
Rachel is a wife and mother living in Raleigh, North Carolina. She’s a fan of good coffee, wearer of gray t-shirts, and is constantly starting books she will never finish. Her family is her joy, and she loves to engage with other moms and dads on matters of parenting. Her blog posts have also been featured on the Today Show Parenting Blog and Scary Mommy.