Is 70 Old Age?
Many of my regular readers know that I took a short hiatus from blogging. There were too many other pressing things to do and with my active life, I just did not prioritize blogging time. I also started two blogs based on the current state of affairs and especially anti-Semitism, but abandoned them as it was too difficult and emotional for me to coherently address. I can simply say that there is too much hatred going on right now, and I don’t understand it. It gave me a good case of writers block too, and I had to take a hiatus to focus on how to blog on something meaningful but hopeful. Instead, here we have this one!
Getting back to the title of this blog, it has been a topic of discussion among many of my friends. I just turned 64, and by the way, the Beatles were right! (Actually not about the “When I’m 64” song which imagines old age life.) They said “the love you take is equal to the love you make,” and I felt that in all of the ways I was messaged, celebrated, and feted. I am a loving person that gives much output in that regard, but I get it back tenfold it seems.
Anyway, at 64, it is not exactly that I have a Peter Pan thing in that I refuse to grow up, because I have been a number one responsible adult and citizen for a long time. Yet, I do refuse to age, or rather become old-aged. I figure I will earn that in my late 80’s and 90’s and that there is plenty of time still for that mentality. They say age is a state of mind, and that is very true. If you feel young, you can stay young.
Still, it seems that the older we get, the more we push back what we consider “old age.” I even resisted the senior citizen title, as I much prefer middle aged, and I expect to live a long life. I do love my senior perks and all that, but the title of senior puts me off a bit, because I don’t FEEL like a senior.
I keep myself looking as good as possible, and with the way I dress, I certainly defy the senior stereotype, as do most of my friends and peers. In fact I received quite a few comments to this effect on my birthday cards and greetings. I particularly loved the line from the Rod Stewart song, “You Wear It Well.” (I suppose meaning I wear my age well.) Someone thoughtful piggybacked on that sentiment and private messaged me a few more lines from that very complimentary song. Although not many younger people would get the reference, and she is long gone, apparently according to at least one person, Madame Onassis has got nothing on (me). She was ageless in an elegant way. I am aiming more for adorable, (which seems to have some incongruity with senior citizen status) but at least I am found appealing and attractive at my ripe old age.
I often joke that I want to stay adorable through my 60’s and I am taking care of myself to make sure that happens, but in truth, I will keep pushing that sentiment into my 70’s!! (I may give this up by 80 but I will let you know if that happens via blogging.) I know a 92 year old woman who is still adorable and young-ish looking, who dresses beautifully and who appears at least 20 years younger. Why can’t that be me, or any of us?
It is a known fact that if you think young, you will more slowly age. In fact, one of my old high school friends when we reconnected wrote me: “You are still the vivacious, enthusiastic person I knew with a love of people and life!” Personality-wise, my ebullience and joie de vive have not aged at all. In that regard, just one of my anti-agining secrets involve enjoying the music of my era, in concerts especially, and this keeps me eternally youthful. There is actual research that proves this, link attached.
Some of my friends are about to enter their late 60’s and some are even turning 70. We remembered back to what it used to mean to turn 70. For women, it was orthopedic shoes and support hose, and old lady dresses. Now in our modern era, you can picture a fit woman who looks like she is at home on the tennis court, golf course, or doing yoga. Many of my friends a year or two from this age appear as they always have – fairly ageless. Many of us feel the same way we did in our thirties and forties, if we have stayed healthy and fit.
Likewise for men, although they look older than us because we have things like hair dye, makeup, and clothes that can make us look absolutely adorable even with our advancing age. There is also plastic surgery, which I would not do I don’t think, but I don’t criticize anyone else who does it.
Yet most men I know pushing 70 are fairly fit, and looking like they have lots more miles to go before their expiration date. One does my hot Bikram yoga and is spry as can be.
The reality is that 70 is a full decade beyond 60 and we have all been using the mantra that 60 is the new 40. (I truly believe you can still do anything in your 60’s that you can do in your 40’s; and most of us are still working and leading active lives as we did back then.)
So should we have aged into old age between 60 and 70? I don’t think so. Again, many of my friends and acquaintances pushing this age are still working in some capacity, or enjoying their active lifestyle minus the work. They dress young, they look young, and they defy aging. They have remained middle aged, rather than becoming seniors.
Though I proudly wear the badge of being a Bubbie, and even being called Bubbie, and many people familiar with the term associate old age with it, I plan to stay the most youthful and fun-loving Bubbie of all.
Take my advice, and become a “Seenager” ( a senior teenager) like me. Enjoy life, keep your sense of fun and wonder, go out and do things you love to do, and you too can defy any age. I regularly check my friends of both genders who have become crotchety, or cranky, or who don’t take care of themselves properly, or stop themselves from having fun or feeling young; and I goad them into doing things. You may have a few aches and pains, but you have to get out there and live life to the fullest.
And to answer the above question, 70 is only old age if you don’t have the right mind-set. Otherwise in my opinion, it is as young as 40 or 50.
What do you think?