Am I in My Right Mind? 

You might be asking yourself the questions, “Why would anyone be glad to be turning 70 years of age? Does her assuming this attitude indicate that she has already entered her dotage?” Let me assure you that you can be happy about turning any age in life whether it is 50 or 100. In my case, I can honestly say that I have enjoyed every single phase of my life. Each decade brought its own set of joys, discoveries, rewards, friendships, and yes, sadness and loss as well. All of this, when examined, leads to a well-lived life. There is no substitute for a wide variety of experiences, and that, my sisters in prime, simply cannot be rushed. It requires a lot of time – and I will start by celebrating 70.

There is little doubt that aging brings illness and a degradation of athleticism and physical power, but despite many life-threatening health situations that I have had to face down over the past few decades, you do not have to allow these to define you. Not at all. I have looked at each episode of ill health, such as having a brain tumor or experiencing bilateral pulmonary emboli while traveling in Hungary three years ago, merely as passages of time from which I would emerge. I was not going to let a medical condition be what my friends and family recalled when they thought of me after I died or more importantly, while I lived.

I want to be remembered as winning the jackpot when it came to marriage and have kept on winning for 52 straight years, thus far. I also want to be recalled as a great daughter, sister, niece and friend who was always more interested in giving than in what she got back. I can tell you that upon attaining 70 last Tuesday, that my husband and my friends are the greatest gifts that age bestows on you. My husband is my friend, my joy, my strength and my rock. I can tell you that my circle of friends plays the very same role, and they enrich my life unbelievably providing laughter, solace, understanding, and just plain fun.

I had much rather be remembered as a serial entrepreneur who hit some ventures out of the park and with others, I struck out or barely got to first base, but no matter the results, everyone knew that I enjoyed every minute of the challenges.

As I am celebrating 70, I know that I have so much left to learn about so many topics and certainly about life itself, but mostly about how to be a better wife, friend and family member. I never place limits on a person’s ability to grow and to have a positive impact on their world and the world in general. I also know that you are just as alive until you draw your last breath as you were when you took in your first. There is a lot to be done, so I best get to it.

Dianne Patterson

Primewomen.com Co-founder

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About The Author

Dianne H. Patterson

Dianne H. Patterson founded Claim Services Resource Group, Inc, a health claims processing firm for insurance carriers and managed care, and served as the company’s CEO for 22 years before selling the firm to Perot Systems Corporation. As a regular contributing editor for PRiME, Dianne is now pursuing the PRiME Women dream of working on only projects she enjoys, and supporting many philanthropic endeavors.