Thursday, May 6, 2010

Out of the Mouths of Babes...

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Why I set myself up to fail with my posting schedule, I don't know. Maybe next week I'll start abiding by it. I actually started writing this post Tuesday while getting my car inspected at lunch in hopes of being only one day late for Miscellaneous Mondays. But sleep studies and doctor appointments and life, oh my, postponed it. So, quite belatedly -- although you wouldn't have known it if I hadn't told you because, really, the topic is a timeless one -- I give you a little perspective on aging.

My 81-year-old father -- who lives in a separate residence on my property and who a year ago had a quintuple bypass followed by a major stroke -- has caregivers 24/7. (Hence the sleep studies and doctor appointments mentioned above.) I was chatting with one of his caregivers about how difficult it is watching the people you love grow old.

The early-20s-something sighed. "Yeah, it really is hard. I hate watching my dad get old." She lowered her voice a bit out of respect. "He's 48, you know."

48.

Old.

I'm perky short, often wear my hair in pigtails and don't have too many wrinkles. I run the little farm, jog a bit and haul around 50-pound bags of feed. I did have breast cancer 9 years ago but it's gone into remission or wherever these things go after being bombarded with enough radiation to power a small utility grid. Otherwise, I'm healthy and don't complain (much) about aches and pains. Overall, I'm lucky to not look or act it, but I am over 48. By a couple of years.

The poor girl apologized all over herself when I broke the news to her.

She has yet to live it down.

I'm not sure I ever will.

17 comments:

writtenwyrdd said...

The thoughtlessness of youth, lol. I'm 49 in a few weeks, and it's a bit weird to have 20-somethings say stuff like that. Of course, in retaliation I tell them things like, "Oh, you'll understand when you're not so wet behind the ears, kid." Or, "Wait a few years and you'll see."

fairyhedgehog said...

I can remember when I thought 30 was old!

Then I got older and took up springboard diving at 42. I thought I'd stay young but CFS has made me feel very old at 56.

Stephen Prosapio said...

Okay, that's just silly. I know how 20-somethings view people in their 40s as "old." But "growing old" is a term for people at least in their 60s or 70s or 80s....and the older I get, the 60s don't seem as old as they used to!

Growing old. 48. C'mon...

_*rachel*_ said...

I'm going to keep my mouth shut this time.

Phoenix said...

Hehe. I guess audience does make a difference.

And Rachel, I must say you are demonstrating remarkable wisdom ;o)

_*rachel*_ said...

Dunno. Does saying it negate it?

Anyway, I've often found people who aren't my age make more mature friends.

Sarah Laurenson said...

I'm 48 now. But I can sort of understand where she's coming from. My Dad was getting old in his late forties. He had a triple bypass at 47 - and that reversed his aging process. He started eating better and exercising. It's too bad cancer got him at 67. His heart was still very strong.

I was just remarking the other day about old magazine articles talking about how great Goldie Hawn looked at 40. Doesn't seem that much of a big deal to me now.

Bernita said...

It's an extremely odd feeling knowing one is viewed as an antique...

Anonymous said...

I took up competitive show jumping at 46. I hope to sky dive. I went up to 10,500 ft in a hot air baloon. Higher you need oxygen.I'm going to Katmandu in Oct. I may not be able to walk to base camp, but I can ride a yak up. I may make it with oxygen or I may have to get on the plane and fly around Everest. Age is a state of mind. By the way I have artificial joints in each hip. I can do anything except contact sports, so no more more hockey or riding goofy youngsters. That I regret. What's age? Nothing to me. I ant stand on the ice of antarctica before it melts too. Bibi
PS Eat your veggies.

Anonymous said...

I took up competitive show jumping at 46. I hope to sky dive. I went up to 10,500 ft in a hot air baloon. Higher you need oxygen.I'm going to Nepal in Oct. I may not be able to walk to base camp, but I can ride a yak up. I may make it with oxygen or I may have to get on the plane and fly around Everest. Age is a state of mind. By the way I have artificial joints in each hip. I can do anything except contact sports, so no more more hockey or riding goofy youngsters. That I regret. What's age? Nothing to me. I want to stand on the ice of Antarctica before it melts too. Bibi
PS Eat your veggies.

Anonymous said...

Sorry - posted twice. Accident. Like aging. I work full time Mon - Fri and do 15 more hours every Sat and Sunday, in a foreign language. The only days off I get are national holidays. So let's move on okay? Here's the truth, the older you get the closer you are to death. So whatever you want to do, do it while you can still sit up and take nourishment. No excuses, live the life you choose. I moved to China at 55. I got kicked out and got back in. I've had adventures like you wouldn't believe and I'm not done yet. Clearly I'm older than you guys. I've got spice and vinegar in me. Loving every minute I have. Bibi

Phoenix said...

Hey Bibi! You go, girlfriend!!!

Here's to Antarctica *cheers*

Robin S. said...

That's a bittersweet hoot, Phooenix!

Chris Eldin said...

You guys really *are* old!
AHAHAHA!
Just teasing, but at 44, I am the youngest in this comment trail.

:-)

(Love the duckling pics!!!)

_*rachel*_ said...

No, Chris, you are not the youngest. Not by a long way.

Anonymous said...

If I can do Everest, by yak or plane, if I can stand on Antarctica ice and play with penguins, I'll have filled my life because I DARED TO DREAM. Just do it. Hugs guys, Bibi

sylvia said...

The best thing about getting older is not being so damn sure about everything any more. I wince to think of all the pronouncements I made and the "facts" that I was sure held true.

To a great extent, getting older has been a relief.