Whadda you mean I’m not 58? I feel like I’m 58.
Yeah, about that. You’re just another baby boomer who thinks that they will live forever. But have you noticed that you are forgetting things more often? That thing where you go into another room but can’t remember why –– is that happening more often? Do you need the TV volume up higher than –– ahem –– some other people in the room? Is figuring out how to do stuff on your computer getting more and more difficult (i.e. requiring the services of random teenagers in order to figure out how to back up your old iTunes –– I know, Apple killed it and they call it Music now. How creative.). Do your knees feel sore after a long walk or a hike? Do I need to continue listing these things or are you getting the message?
You –– we –– are in denial. And the older we get, the more denial we exhibit. I’m not particularly worried about it. It’s normal as we age. I’m more worried about where it stops. This is why children take away the parent’s car keys. I don’t have any children. Does that mean people I don’t even know are going to tell me I should not be driving anymore? I know this day is far off (or is that just more denial?), but it’s never too early to start worrying about it.
Baby boomers just don’t think of themselves as “older adults.” And honestly, why should they? The definition of older adult has been “updefined.” The President is 78. The Speaker of the House is 79. Bernie Sanders is 79 and he’s a famous meme for crying out loud!
Of course, we are not the first generation of oldsters to face this problem. The difference is that we are baby boomers, and I don’t have to tell you, boomers have this group-think tendency to believe we are different than past generations. Not necessarily better, but different. Our culture has contributed to this effect as well. We are living longer and healthier lives. There are more medical and psychological means of deferring events that used to define old age.
So. What to do? Keeping paddling in the Nile? That’s where you will find me. Until or unless someone takes away my paddle.
Jay Harrison is a writer and creative consultant at DesignConcept. His mystery novel, Head Above Water, is available on Amazon and Kindle. You can also visit his author page here.