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Be careful what stories you tell yourself, they may come back to haunt you one day

By Nina Steele 

Be careful what stories you tell yourselfI don’t know about you, but I have zero fear of old age, because I know deep down that I will be fine. There is of course a belief that not having children means you will be at a disadvantage in old age. Those who have followed me for a while know where I stand on this. Yes I do believe that my husband and I will be absolutely fine in old age. Words are powerful and by believing this, we are setting the stage for what’s to come.

Whatever stories we tell ourselves, we are setting the stage for what will become. It is one of those facts of life. I have seen it with my own life and that of people I have met along the way. If you go around painting yourself as a victim of life for one reason or another, guess what, more challenges will come your way to prove you right.

The key is acceptance. Acceptance does not mean that you don’t try harder to make whatever it is you want become reality, of course that’s not what I mean. Acceptance is to find the courage to move on from something you wanted, after you tried and tried and it failed to materialise.

The mistake is to allow a failed experience to become the thing that defines you. And because we are what we believe, you end up getting exactly what you have been predicting would happen to you. If you spend your life believing that not having children means you will end up lonely and sad in old age, then why should the universe give you anything else?

I was lucky enough to meet some very positive childless old people in my former job. I have to admit that even though I have always been positive about life, working in close proximity with them for so long, helped a great deal. They were proof that you are more likely to have a contented life in old age as a childless person, if you had a positive mindset to begin with.

I still remember my chats with an old man. He never married and had no children. He was one of those people you felt drawn to. He was always smiling. Chatting with him was always a pleasure. It’s not by chance that I have a ‘Readers’ Stories’ section on this website. I like to know about people and everyone has a story to tell. Not once did I detect a sadness in him about how his life had turned out. Because he was a regular member of the day centre, our charity kept a tab on his attendances. If he missed a few visits, and didn’t inform us beforehand, we tried every means we had to find out why. In short, the centre was the family he never had.

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