The Big Six-O

In just a few short days I’ll be turning sixty years old.  I’ve never liked making a big fuss about my birthdays, and this year is no exception.  We’ve already had the usual family dinner at my favorite restaurant, and my husband and I hope to take a long weekend trip sometime this summer.  That’s our standard procedure for celebrating birthdays now that we have reached the age when we no longer want or need gifts, and it suits both of us just fine.  Still, there’s something about turning sixty that feels kind of like a big deal, in both a good and bad way.

On the one hand, turning sixty means that I’m really pushing the limit when I insist on calling myself middle-aged.  Unless I manage to live to be 120, I am definitely past the mid-point of my life.  But if I admit I’m not middle aged any more, then that means I have to figure out how to change the name of my blog.  Plus think of an name that doesn’t include the phrase “senior citizen.”  Eventually, of course, I’ll have to change the name since it would be weird for someone who is 89 to be writing a blog named Muddling Through My Middle Age, but that’s a problem for another day.

On the other hand, even though sixty does sound really old to me, there’s something kind of liberating about my upcoming birthday.  Honestly, I’ve looked at least sixty years old for the past several years.  I inherited my father’s prematurely sagging neckline and also his fair skin that shows each and every wrinkle and broken capillary in clear detail.  And I think I was about forty-two when my hair turned seriously gray and I understood just exactly why mother dyed her own hair for most of her adult life.  So in a way, it’s kind of nice to finally actually be the age I look.

IMG_3479Beyond that, entering this new decade does feel just a little bit exciting and new.  My husband’s retirement is just a few years away, which means we’ll be free to do some of the traveling we’ve longed to do.  And the empty-nest my kids created when they moved out of the house is beginning to fill up again with supplies for my new grandson.  My son’s old bedroom has been turned into a “baby room,” complete with a crib, rocker, toys and baby books, to be used by my grandson and any other grandchildren I’m lucky enough to acquire.  (Note to my kids:  yes, that was a subtle hint.)

Turning sixty sort of symbolizes a new phase in my life, and I’m looking forward to seeing just what it will bring.  I may no longer be young, but I am a grandmother, and that seems like a fair trade.  I’ve lived long enough to begin to understand who I really am and better yet, to feel brave enough to let others see the “real” me as well.  I’m still relatively healthy, and still able to pursue some of my unfulfilled dreams.

And who knows?  Maybe this will be the decade when I not only look my age, but I begin to act my age as well.  But I wouldn’t bet on it…..

126 thoughts on “The Big Six-O

  1. If I missed your birthday, Ann, then Happy Belated Birthday and if not, then I hope your day will be a wonderful one. Turning 70 didn’t bother me (8 years ago!). I thought it would but it was just another year. Don’t they say that 60 is the new 40? We still have some middle age years ahead of us.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Good for you! You’re a few years ahead of me, but sixty is something that I too will face before long. I think the purpose of these milestones, at least for me, is to look at my life and ask some hard questions. Have I gotten everything done that I wanted to do? (And okay, the answer to that one is always no. Big surprise.) And then, related to the first, perhaps in an attempt to salve my wounded pride: Were the things I did accomplish important?

    Being a good grandmother is an often-overlooked accomplishment. Grandmas seem to be relegated to the nice, but not necessary category. But I can tell you that my grandmother, even though she lived a thousand miles away for half my childhood, had a huge impact on my life. She died in 2014, and I still miss her.

    May your post-sixty years be full of travel, joy, and worthwhile accomplishments. I’m looking forward to reading about them. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks, Cathleen! You are so nice. And I know what you mean about grandmothers. Mine was a huge, and positive, influence on me, even though she died when I was just 18. It makes me want to take grandparenting very, very seriously!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. First, happy (probably by now, belated) birthday.
    I understand about fitting into an age that you’ve felt you’ve looked or been for some years before. I started to go gray when I was very much younger, and I quite looked forward to my fifites, thinking I’d be really laid back and self-accepting by then… but in fact, it’s been in my sixties that that’s happened. So, yes, I think you’ve got some pleasant suprises on the way. I hope so, anyway. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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