Words from Dic(tionary)
Age: (n) 1. the length of time that a person has lived 2. a period of history 3. (v) to grow older, especially visibly
When I was twelve, I really wanted to be thirteen. God, I ached all over! It was probably just the onset of puberty, but I didn’t know.
I really looked forward to eighteen, too. Twenty-one was cool, but since eighteen was the new voting age and I wasn’t that interested in drinking–not a big deal.
I felt a little giddy when I was twenty-five because I got to be in that group of “over twenty-five.”
Thirty put a chill down my spine, but then I realized I had nine more years for the decade. By forty I had so many kids that I barely remember the birthday.
Fifty was spooky. It’s when I really began to notice that age IS an issue. I don’t know–maybe my skin turned grayer, or I limped more, or wrinkles formed in my forehead? I’m not sure. But suddenly, everybody under the age of thirty started to treat me like a senior citizen.
It was quite frightening when the envelope arrived from AARP, inviting me to be a member. I recall how horrified I was the first time some teenage girl at Applebee’s asked me if I wanted to apply my senior citizen’s discount. A little piece of my soul wanted to roll over, crumple and die.
But I have especially noticed it this year, as I travel around the country. Younger folks think it’s powerful to treat me like I’m over the hill and couldn’t possibly have anything to share with anyone who isn’t eating their meals through a straw.
Actually, I think we have four different “ages:”
- An emotional age, which should be more mature, but most folks freeze at about thirteen.
- A spiritual age–a delicate blending of a child’s heart and the wisdom of Solomon.
- A mental age, only determined by how willing we are to continue to learn instead of pouring cement into our cranial cavity.
- And a physical age, which is strongly determined by genetics, lifestyle and willingness to exercise and consume fruits and vegetables.
If you average all four of those ages, you arrive at your actual number. You should try it.
By the way, I tallied mine. I came up with 43 years, 8 months.
That’s about right.