Ageless

No doubt about it, there are certain advantages to aging.  And I’m not talking about just the wisdom and self-acceptance that most of us achieve as we grow older.  I’m talking about the fact that old people can get away with stuff that younger people can’t.  For example, when I take 88-year old mother out to eat, she has no problem letting the waiter know the very second she’s ready to order, even if that means calling across the room to attract his attention.  I have yet to see a waiter take offense.  Instead, all she gets is a tolerant smile and sometimes even a friendly pat on the shoulder.  Somehow, I don’t think that would be the response if my mother wasn’t a textbook example of a “cute little old lady.”

Even at age 60, I have found that my age can be an advantage.  I have heard of people who have a “resting bitch face,” but personally, I have always had what can only be called a “resting stupid face.”  Meaning that when I don’t have a specific expression on my face, I tend to look as if I’m just a few bricks short of a load.  And that has served me well, particularly when I pair it with the words, “But I don’t understand.”  I can’t tell you how many people have done what I’ve wanted just because they couldn’t be bothered to explain the rules to someone they believed wasn’t bright enough to understand them.

But now that I have reached a certain age, I’ve found that the only thing better than having a “resting stupid face” is having an old resting stupid face.  If I’m having a disagreement with someone, (particularly someone younger) I have found that my most effective response is to simply stand there and look at them in a perplexed sort of way.  Sooner or later, they tend to give in, even if they do sigh loudly and roll their eyes at the same time.

Still, I’m only human, and there are times when I don’t really want to feel quite so old.  I miss the vitality of my younger days, would give anything to have the perfect eyesight, firm skin and boundless energy I once took for granted.  Luckily, I’ve discovered a fool-proof way to make me feel young again, and it doesn’t require any expensive or painful surgical procedures.  When I want to feel young, all I have to do is spend time with some of my treasured, life-long friends.  Seriously.

Maybe it’s because they knew me “way back when,” or maybe it’s because when I look at them I still see the young person they once were.  But for whatever reason, when I’m with my old friends, the years just melt away and I truly feel young again.  And it isn’t long before I’m also acting as if I was young:  laughing hysterically at our silly jokes, staying up late because no one wants the evening to end, and most of all, feeling that as long as I have my friends by my side, there’s nothing I can’t handle.

Aging does have it’s advantages, but every once in a while, I need my “old” friends to remind me of what it was like to be young…..

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79 thoughts on “Ageless

  1. Ah, Ann, this is pure gold! I was laughing so hard, and then I got all pensive and wished my old friends were not all hundreds of miles away. I can tell you from the perch of almost-78, it keeps getting better! Your sense of humor will always serve you well!

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    • Thank you so much for the kind comment! A few of my old friends live far away too, but we make it a point to get together once a year and almost always succeed. (Of course, that didn’t happen when our children were young, but we still stay connected.) It is so fun to see them!

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    • Ha! You are so funny! But honestly, the first time I realized I had one is when I also realized how many people were speaking to me as if I wasn’t that bright…and then I looked in the mirror and thought, “Oh, now I see!”

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  2. Your blog is timely for me. I’ve invited some childhood friends to my birthday party. Two are boys (now septuagenarians) whom I’ve know since my pre-school days. One I met in kindergarten. And then we go to high school, where I met three girls with whom I am still friends. But, I value my friendship with you, Patty, and Nancy just as much, even though you’ve only known me as a “leaving middle age going into senior status” person.

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  3. What a lovely tribute to those good friends who’ve been so loyal over the years! We need to treasure every moment with them coz like your mother’s friends they will soon move on to whatever comes next …

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  4. I believe being together with old friends does a lot to rejuvenate one’s spirit and to feel young at heart again. I had similar experiences. Being 77 years old gives me quite a few advantages. When I don’t understand something people tell me, I feel very confident to ask them to repeat what they said. No grumblings at a senior here. Thank you, Ann, for this encouraging post!

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  5. I rely on my sweet, silver-haired old lady face to let me seem more approachable. As for life-long pals, they’re great because they know what I’m capable of and that I won’t do it. And the “new” pals I meet along the way are just as goofy as me! 😉

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  6. I always enjoy your post-this one made me laugh-Years ago, my old neighbor and dear friend, used to say all sorts of things, like “that is ugly!” I never back talked my elder, but now I am sixty (within weeks) and I love the perks! haha!

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  7. It has been said that we are every age we have ever been. I love to think about that. It reminds me that the young girl I once was is still a part of me. The seasons of my life change, almost like a tree with many branches. Once, it was a little tree, and then it just kept growing and growing…And all that branching-out allowed for so much light to shine through. Every year brought new people and adventures to love. And yes, those early branches of friendship are forever dear. Those ‘branches’ enabled us to keep becoming, to keep reaching out, to believe that the best was yet to be.

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    • I hadn’t heard that before, but I love it! Especially since it does mean that the young person we once were is still inside us…which makes sense because we can still feel her once in a while, can’t we? I also like the image of the tree, always growing toward new, good things while staying firmly connected to our roots. Thank you!

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    • I love your comment. It’s a wonderful way to look at life–every age becomes a pat of us. I’ve always said that whatever we’ve experienced makes us who we are today. It’s true–“we are every age we have ever been.”

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  8. Being of that same certain age range it is truely magical to reconnect with a friend from 30 or 40:years ago and not have missed a beat, as if you were together for all those years and still “get” each other. Congrats to you for finding this aging libertation.

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    • Your right, it does feel magical! And I think the key is that we still get each other so well, even after all these years, and even when we’ve gone far too long without getting together. It’s a gift for sure!

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  9. I kind of envy you having access to friends from “back in the day”, I’ve lost touch with almost everyone from that era simply because I moved halfway across the country at age 20. I guess the flip side is to enjoy the friends we have in the current days.

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    • Yes, I know I’m lucky! Some of them don’t live super close, but they are close enough that we can still get together every year. But as you say, you can enjoy the friends you’ve made more recently too, and I know I value those “newer friends” just as much…even if they don’t always make me feel young!

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    • That must have been hard! I moved a bit as a child, but stayed in each place at least four years and I was lucky to keep up some of the friendships. I know that children who had to move every few years had an entirely different experience. Thanks for your kind comment!

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  10. I have a resting stupid face, too! So did my mother! My husband will gaze at me and say I look the image of my mother. Then I know my eyes are round and mouth slightly agape. I was telling one of my young colleagues that I am asked out by middle-aged men more than I was by anyone in my 20’s. She looked aghast especially when I told her it was all talk because the shop down there was shut…

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  11. Each time I visit my parents’ place, the entire neighborhood talk to me as though I am still a child. It’s a small neighborhood where everyone knows each other. All of them are either my peers or older than me. The talk is mostly about the games we played or the movies we watched together. I feel so young there.
    Every time I visit my in-laws place, I feel I have to put on a responsible, adult face. The talk is more about how to raise kids in this competitive world, the right things to do etc etc. It drains me out and I feel so old there. It is understandable because people there have only seen me as an adult.
    With school and college friends, the feeling is so liberating. Those silly jokes and talks. It is bliss… It makes you ageless. 🙂

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  12. I love the funny tongue in cheek way that this post is written…. made me chuckle out loud, especially at the descriptions of the “resting stupid face” and how you use it. I will have to try that sometime haha.

    Yes, friends that knew us when we were 20 or 30, still see us that way, as we do them. Whereas if we meet people and make friends now today in the present moment of being “older”, of course they see us differently. So much is about perception. Or if people don’t know my age… and think I am younger than I am they react differently to me. When they find out I am actually 62, I can see the shift that happens.. as of course 62 is ancient.

    Who was it who once said “youth is wasted on the young”….

    Great post

    Peta

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  13. I don’t remember, but it’s a phrase that I agree with! As for the “resting stupid face,” it’s just amazing how helpful it is. Especially as I grow older, because you’re right, people do tend to dismiss us as ancient. I get that all the time because, sadly, I DO look my age, and then some!

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  14. What a lovely picture to go with this wonderful post, Ann! My mum’s discovering happily the things she can get away with these days. 😉 Helps that she looks very sweet and smiles a lot. 😄
    I find that listening to music from your childhood also makes you feel younger. 😊

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  15. Love the photo at the end Ann. It’s so great to have friends who knew us when we were young and silly. Now we can be old and silly. 🤣 Great post. Thanks for the smiles this morning. xx

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