In Thoughts

Growing Old

A couple of days ago I met an old gentleman. He was waiting for the red lights to stop, so he could cross the street away. And as a gentle lad #halah, I helped him to cross the street, seeing how crowded the street was with motorcycle. So I helped him. He then thanked me, and walked away. Seeing him from his back, really moved me. A 70++ year old grandpa, walked in agonizing pain by the help of a wooden stick, by himself on a busy street to get his medicine in the nearest apothecary. The question that popped on my mind was, "where the hell was his family?" 

That story is related to my biggest fear of all, which is growing old. Or what people these days would like to call as Gerascophobia *what the heck*. Based on Wikipedia's definition, it is defined as an abnormal or persistent fear of growing old or ageing.  It is based on anxieties of being left alone, without resources and incapable of caring for oneself, Sufferers may be young and healthy.

Funny isn't it? takut tua.. I also thought that it's super weird. Sementara jutaan orang diluar sana takut akan ajal yang bisa kapan aja menjemput, I, on the other hand, am afraid of getting old, like I'm sure I'm going to get old (hope is always there though).

But the real question is, why am I so afraid of getting old? Isn't getting old suppose to be fun? You sit on your wooden chair, seeing how your kids reach their success, play with your grand kids, spend some retirement money with your lovely spouse, and spend every minute with your lovely family.

But one of these days, society has taught us not to see wisdom and experience but weakness and ugliness. So when the inevitable truth of ageing confronts us in the mirror – is this sagging? Is that drooping? – we don’t react well. Consequently the ultimate compliment has become, “Oh, you don’t look your age!” And there is, of course, the inescapable fact that the elderly remind us of our own mortality as well as that of our nearest and dearest. I am frightened of becoming weak and needy, losing my minds and mobilityMore on my fears on growing old :
  1. Being undesirable. Most see fine lines and wrinkles, frown lines, laugh lines, sagging skin, etc with a sense of negativity. These are linked with ‘ugly
  2. Being lesser than who they should be. All of us have goals and dreams. When you were younger, you would have consciously or unconsciously envisioned yourself being somewhere at a certain age. It may be to earn a lot of money, achieve a certain amount of success and have a family. Reaching a certain age reminds you of your visions, and simultaneously triggers the realization that they are not where they want to be. This realization can be quite painful for some.
  3. Fear of Loss. Growing older comes with loss – seeing people pass away, losing what they have now, losing their youth, losing their health (see reason # 2).
  4. Being Alone. People see old people as a burden and they try to avoid them. For example, there is a lot of grandmothers in their 80s and presumably has more than one children. When it comes to taking care of her, her kid tries to shift responsibility from one another, giving reasons like they are too busy. Old age tends to bring solitude.
  5. Inability to do everyday's task. Most elder people can't do their daily activities by themselves. Waking up, walking to the bathroom, chewing the food. They need help from others to do their chores because of their physical limitations.
Have you ever thought of one of the points mentioned above? Harusnya. As for me, not a day that I would not think about it. Because it really got me, inside my head. Some of my friends said, 

"kenapa dipikirin sih? jalanin aja haha. namanya juga proses hidup" 

Am I being irrational? Maybe. But the point why I'm sharing this is because, life is too short, that's why I try to embrace every moment and opportunity yang ada, related to the second point mentioned above. Because you never know, when your own body is going to limit you to certain job that you need to do. Honest to God, naik tangga sampai lantai 4 kost aja udah bikin gw capek ga kepalang.

How am I dealing with this issue? I read an article that led me to this quote
"Don’t wake up one day only to regret having missed out on so many things in life. Don’t miss out on all the marvelous things that are out there in your life now, because you are too busy fearing something which is going to happen anyway. Don’t fearing growing older now, only to look back later in life and regret not having lived life the way you wanted."
I'm still scared until this very moment yes, and I believe that it's normal. I'm still dealing with it though, hope I can get closure asap. By the end, here are some quotes that eased my mind about growing old (and help me to think, rationally):

“Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.” – Mark Twain

“If wrinkles must be written upon our brow, let them not be written upon the heart. The spirit should not grow old.” – James A. Garfield

Lastly, what's ur biggest fear in life? Leave it on the comments below

Till Next Post


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  1. gila, merinding bacanya. Gue jarang ngebayangin berumur tua sih. Oh iya, kalau gue mati muda. Ingat, gue pernah komentar ini. Perceived it as firasat hahah

  2. Instead of takut tua, gw lebih takut jadi tua dan penuh penyesalan.