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Are You Better Than Jim?

May 5, 2016

Jim’s doing push ups on the mess hall floor. He’s seventy-something. Every other senior is doing wall push ups. Jim knows the ground. He served his country earning trust and respect becoming Major General Barry. He also knows the ground as a life long gymnast. Jim served his sport as an Executive Member of the Australian Olympic Committee (1993 to 2005) and officiated at ten Olympic Games and six Commonwealth Games.

I know Jim because he’s part of Lord Somers Camp & Power House. I have the gall to be leading an ageing well program with Dr. Liz Cyarto. Jim doesn’t need anything I have to say, but I need him. He’s got me down on the floor, not because of what he said, but because of how he lives. His quiet push ups in the corner have motivated me to get down and dirty.

I get to 15 push ups. I used to be able to do twice that, easily. By the time I’ve wiped the dust off my knees, he’s done 15 more. My life will get harder if I don’t live like Jim. He’s exercising his body, he’s living a life of continual service and the care of his wife, as we spend three days at this Elders Camp, makes my heart ache in a good way.

The wise elders amongst us are wake up call from the last chapters of their life to the unfolding chapters of ours.

How are you living? How are you giving?

James E Barry, AM, MBE

Major General Jim Barry, AM, MBE, RFD, ED (Rtd)

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