The New Age

When I first started this blog, I planned to write about the challenges facing women “of a certain age.”  Specifically, I wanted to write about how to handle the time in our lives when we can no longer call ourselves young without everyone thinking we are either drunk or completely delusional, and yet are also not ready to embrace the title of senior citizen.  (Although we will happily accept the discounts, especially if no one is around to see it.)

You would think that after four years of writing this blog I would have run out of things to say on the subject, but so far that hasn’t happened.  And I think I know why.  I may not always write specifically about aging, but the fact that I am a sixty-year old woman really does impact how I see the world around me and how I interact with it.

If I were writing this blog when I was eighteen, you can bet that not a single post would mention wrinkles, menopause or nostalgia for a time when I woke up and some part of my body didn’t hurt.  Instead, I’d probably be writing about struggling with trying to pick a major in college that would lead to a rewarding career, wondering if I was ever going to find true love, and did I have enough money to buy myself a couple of beers on Friday night?

So one way or another, my age does determine my perspective, in both good and bad ways.  For example, I would have considered my recent oral surgery a bad thing, no matter what age I had to endure it.  But as a sixty-year old woman, I couldn’t help but notice that the slight swelling in my cheeks did a great (if temporary) job of eliminating the fine wrinkles around my mouth.   And when I was a young woman, a shopping trip meant searching for clothes that were both stylish and flattering.  Now I couldn’t possibly care less about what’s in style (I refuse to wear “peek-a-boo shoulder” blouses and my chubby little legs will never be stuffed into a pair of skinny jeans) and seek mainly comfort when I’m making my wardrobe selections.  If the outfit is also flattering, that’s a plus, but it’s not mandatory.  Thank goodness, because so few of them are.

IMG_3935The bottom line is that being sixty is a part of who I am now, just as being seventy will be a part of who I am in ten years.  Age affects all our lives.   I was reminded of this last week when I was watching my grandson, who is now eight-months old.  It wasn’t that long ago when he was still at the age where he stayed where I put him.  Now he not only crawls over to his toy box when I put him on the floor,  he reaches into it and personally selects the toys he’d like to play with.  Sometimes age has a very big impact indeed.

I suppose I will never reach the point where I have written all I can about coping with a particular phase of my life, because each phase simply flows into the next.  And each phase brings its own unique challenges and rewards.  All I can hope is that this adventure continues for many more years to come….

76 thoughts on “The New Age

  1. I would like to add just one wrinkle (ha, a fitting word indeed) to your mature way of handling your blog that attracts both young and old. By writing our love story of more than 50 years ago, my wife and I are re-experiencing great moments of our life, which would otherwise be fading away. Not only were our tender feelings for each other rekindled, but also it was heart-warming to see so much interest among my blogging friends. Perhaps you too, Ann, might be inclined to look back at your life and share some of events with us here.

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    • That’s a good idea, Peter! I’d never thought of it that way, and had just assumed that writing our life story would be a way of preserving our personal and family history. But you’re right, it’s also a way to relive the best parts of it. (Not to mention sharing it with our readers…and I can honestly say that your story is very interesting and inspiring.) I may just write a bit more about our history!

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  2. You surprise your readers with the wide range of topics you write about Ann. From your oral surgery to your eye opening blog on how it is important to be able to listen to and befriend people with ideologies (political or otherwise) different from yours, the topics have been diverse but with a touch of the wisdom (which is another “w”) that you gain with age.
    I always read about bloggers talking about identifying a niche for your blogs. But today I learnt that when a person writes his/her perspective on things around, things that every other person experiences, that person’s perspective is itself his/her niche.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yes, I had heard the same advice, and that’s why I honestly thought that this blog would be limited to specifically writing about aging. But there’s only so much you can say directly about that subject, and so I branched out a bit to whatever I happened to be thinking about at the time. And then I realized that I was still writing about aging, in a way, because my age does influence how I look at things. I also agree that the writing from our own, unique perspective actually is our niche!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with all your serious points, but the one that had me shouting Yes! aloud was the peek-a-boo shoulders. I mean, what is the point? I just look at them and think the second-hand shops will be flooded next summer. There is a serious point to that though, because I don’t like the idea of disposable fashion. Bad for the environment and bad for the sweatshop system that (possibly) made it.

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    • I know! I just think they look silly, as if there’s a hole in the sleeve that needs to be mended. I really do think they are a style we won’t see again anytime soon, which does make them a waste of our resources and probably something that will end up in a landfill. Good point, Anabel!

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    • I wouldn’t go back either. I would love to have the eyesight and firm skin I had when I was young, but that’s about it. I’m much more confident and comfortable with myself now than I was then. I think most of are. Thanks for the comment, Alison!

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  4. Yeah, I’m often achy when I get out of bed in the mornings, but I also look forward to lots of special moments. Right now, I’m sitting at my desk, coffee nearby–I need that second cup now–and while some may feel despair in a quiet house, I’m relishing the peace. That is, the peace that can come from being retired. For so many years, I got up and drove to work, arriving early to prepare for my day, and after putting everything I had into the best patient care I could provide (retired dental hygienist), I can now relax and know I paid my dues, put in my time, and NOW IT’S MY TIME. It’s a great feeling. 🙂 I may not like the numbers (I’m 59 and hubby is 70), but it can be a real sweet time in life. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re right, we’ve reached the age when many of us can take a well-deserved break from our careers and raising our families, and focus on ourselves a bit more. And that is nice, even if we are a little surprised by just how old we are!

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  5. All I can hope is that this adventure continues for many more years to come…

    The thing about adventures is that all the stuff you worry about tends to be not that big of a deal – but the stuff you don’t even think about, well…

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  6. The title to your blog is what brought me here in the first place. Yes, “middle age” and whatever comes after that are actually very interesting times in our lives. It’s quite a bit different than what I imagined when I was young. It’s good to discuss, write and think about getting older. Along with the other topics you write about, you do a great job of covering these times that we thought would never arrive. Well, they’re finally here, aren’t they? And you’re right, there’s hopefully a lot more to come. Keep up the good work, Ann.

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    • Thanks for letting me know, Des! I wasn’t really happy with it when I started out, but all the titles I really wanted were already taken. I do think this is an interesting time in our lives, and it’s playing out in a very different way that I ever would have imagined. And yet is is good, and I have no real complaints (not that I don’t manage to whine now and then, because I certainly do.) But like you, I hope we do have many more years to come!

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    • Thank you so very much for those kind words, Brenda! As you know, every writer hopes that their words will resonate with someone, so I really appreciate you letting me know that. And I hope you know how much I enjoy your blog too!

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  7. I love the way you can take an ordinary or routine event in your life and turn it into a universal life lesson. I have learned a lot from your articles, and look forward to many many more. It is also very nice to see how active and grown-up your grandson has become.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Joe! I’ve begun to believe that we can learn from almost everything that happens to us (even though sometimes I’d just as soon skip a particular lesson or two, I admit!). And yes, watching my grandson grow is so fun…he’s changing before my eyes!

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  8. Life is an endless muse, isn’t it..:). The aging process provides with ideas and tops we never though would enter our minds let alone our lives. But it’s upon us and we can and should welcome the nuggets that ignite a thought we can use here. Who knows what tomorrow will bring…..or five minutes from now..:)
    Most Everyone can write about 25. How many get the chance to write about the coming years..:)
    Enjoy!

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    • That’s a good point, George! The fact that we’re here to write about the aging process at all is a gift, and one we should value. Life changes so quickly, I don’t think we will ever run out of things to write about. Always good to hear from you, and hope you and your family are doing well!

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  9. You say all these things so well. I’m just a couple years behind you, but I understand everything you are saying. And I think you’re right that all the phases flow into each other. I also think that, while being young is great in many ways, it’s often a lot harder than we remember.

    And who decided that peek-a-boo shoulder shirts were a good idea? I’m with you – I refuse to wear them!

    Liked by 1 person

    • The phases of our lives do flow together…sometimes so smoothly that we barely notice the difference!
      And I’m glad you agree about those silly peek-a-boo shoulder shirts. I swear, I have no idea why anyone would want to wear one! They just look so weird…..

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      • Haha they do. At first I thought someone had pulled one out from the back of her closet but then I saw a lot of people wearing them. They remind me of a shirt Becky from Full House once wore on the show. We all laughed so hard then because it was so weird!

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  10. One of your best, Ann. We women of a certain age can all relate. On the one hand, our bloom has faded and we lose our spryness; on the other hand, our powers of appreciation blossom and we understand the importance of kindness. Best thing for me, I don’t care what others think of my looks or wardrobe choices. I wear no make up, nor do I color my hair. I feel utterly free, particularly since I retired last spring. Being retired is like being a kid again, only better because you are your own boss 🙂

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  11. Beautifully written, Ann! Every so often I wonder where the person I was ten or fifteen years ago went, my perspective on life has changed so much! Your thoughts show me that it´s perfectly normal and actually a good thing – and I liked how you put a positive spin to that oral surgery (hope you´re better now?) what with its effect on your wrinkles 😉 I´ve noticed that gaining weight can have the same effect, lol! But am determined to not go that way until absolutely have to. 😉 Since using Botox or whatever hellish thing they come up with to look young isn´t really my style. And how sweet to see your grandson picking his toys from the box – time does really fly, doesn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks! The oral surgery went well, and I’m still recovering and healing a bit more every day. Sadly, as the swelling went down the wrinkles came back, but that’s okay. No botox for me, either! (Who wants to inject a foreign substance in their face???) So I just keep pretending not to notice the wrinkles and that’s working just fine for now. Time flies for sure!

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  12. I am always hot – always have been and it has nothing to do with my age. I just bought some “peek-a-boo” shoulder tops and – whew! They help keep me cool. So I am loving them! We all have our things/styles we refuse to wear, but I thought I would just share that with you! 🙂

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    • That’s a good point, Terre! A friend of mine said the same thing. She doesn’t like to wear sleeveless tops, but she is hot often, and finds that the peek-a-boo shoulders are very helpful in keeping her cool. I’m glad they work for you…to each his own, I always say. And thanks for sharing!

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