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Alysia Korelc: Aging Gracefully to 100

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ABC will air Barbara Walters' special report, “Live to be 150 . . . Can You Do It?” on Tuesday, April 1, at 10:00 p.m. (ET). http://www.alcornews.org/weblog/2008/03/update_abc_news_barbara_walter.html

The report intends to enlighten us on how we can live a long life, who is and what this special generation does to keep going.

My mother will be 80 next year. She keeps saying things like, "if I live that long," as though her health is so bad that she has to worry. She is the healthiest person I know and in even better condition than I am (I have lupus). She and I were talking about living to be 100 and I said I'm not so sure I'd want to.

I say that because of the health issues I know I have. I just ran a hugely popular 10K event in our capitol city where a 97-year old man, Mr. Smith, who has participated since he was 71, still walks the difficult course (with some help). When he comes across the line, he sits in his wheelchair to cheer on remaining participants still coming in.

My grandfather aged gracefully into his 90's. He was active, mentally razor-sharp and quite the character. He would be the model for anyone to follow, and I hope to age as gracefully as he.

Perhaps I'm being a bit vain, but I can't see myself on that 10K course all bent over with osteoporosis at age 97. I can't even see reaching age 97, as I'm having a tough enough time reaching 57. Truth is: I really don't want to be a caregiver's nightmare to my spouse or my children.

We're told stories and shown videos of people who have crossed the century mark and then some, and we're in awe of what they must have witnessed in their lifetimes.

I'm happy to live one day at a time. Does that make sense?

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