I know one thing for sure: People change over time.
I also have a hunch: In most cases, people get wiser and kinder when they reach their 70s, 80s and beyond.
I have no statistical study to prove this hypothesis, but I have so many examples of friends and relatives who have made this aging journey with me. I talk to them. I play with them. I have coffee and ice cream cones with them. I watch them work through challenges and tragedies and make courageous decisions. I watch them cry, and I watch them dance. I hide around the corner as they reach their wrinkled hand to lift up a stranger in need.
Look no further than this Theo guy from Illinois, who was in jail when I met him. He messed up more than the average Theo, but he was just a young kid attempting to borrow money without the donor being aware of his generosity. Within 15 years, Theo paid for his error of judgment, learned to cook great fillets and New York Strips, and used his flair for comedy to set up a popular eating spot. Each hour, a free steak would go to the funniest customer. The place got packed and Theo, the former thief, gave thousands of dollars to underprivileged kids who learned how to be funny while flipping fillets.
Now in his 70s, Theo is a fat, funny philanthropist who leads thousand of kids to success. My hunch is, in a way, many of us old folks are a lot like Theo.