I wrote about my thoughts on ageing the other day. I was really moved by some of the comments and replies I received about my post.
I had my 60th birthday in June. I’m now at the age my Nan was when I was 6 months old. From my earliest memories of her, she was a little old lady with pure white hair, glasses, thick stockings, below the knee skirt and a “pinnie”. She never wore trousers, didn’t have any. 60 years down the line, although I have a few wrinkles, I look nothing like that white haired, little old lady. I certainly don’t behave in the same way that she did. I feel that I have matured mentally in regard to things that are important and that affect me and my family, but I still feel about 30-something in my head. I’m actually fitter than I have been for over 25 years – and slimmer. I do more exercise now than I have ever done in my life. I’m not ready to throw in the towel just yet 🙂 However, I do feel sometimes that people treat me differently. I sometimes get sniggered at as I refuse to wear “old lady clothes”, but I don’t give a hoot. I can’t comment on the job market personally, but I do know people around my age that have had or are having extreme difficulty in finding permanent employment. I don’t wear much make up – in fact, only the barest minimum if I’m “going out”, so what’s in my drawer has been there a long time. Decades in some cases. I do sometimes wonder if I’d feel better if my hair were to go grey instead of staying blonde, as then it may justify and match the wrinkles LOL! My Nan passed at 80, my Mom at almost 91 so on that basis, I may have another 40 years left in me, but I’m not taking that for granted. There are still things that I want to do, want to see and places that I want to go, so hopefully, I have enough time left to do that. I think we should all just enjoy what we have had, and what is left to come. If the age-bashers don’t like it…..tough titty — Gill
Maybe I shouldn’t comment as I just turned 28. But I really like this article and I think it’s such a shame that the some of the world is still like this. Ageist, sexist, racist etc.
I am excited to get my first greys, I wonder if grey will suit me as I don’t dye my hair. I wonder if I will have more laugh lines or frowns lines in time. I worry about how my skin will age and if I’ve been silly and damaged it in my youth. I have got to wait to find out all these things though.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m in no hurry to be older but I’m looking forward to it all the same. Its nice to see that there are some people embracing it and not just trying to pretend it’s not happening. And I hope that I am a glamorous looking older lady with a twinkle in my eye still and lots of energy for the world! —- Alice
I am just grateful for every day I wake up. After a car accident 20 years ago, life became so precious when I realised my own mortality. Sure, there are some things about growing older that won’t be fun, but I am grateful for them anyways. Growing old is a privilege denied to many. — Inger
In this world, it appears that the general attitude is older = a less valid human being. “Old”is always relative. A 10 year old thinks that a 20 year old is ancient. A 20 year old thinks that a 30 year old is over the hill and so on for every age group. Aging is a natural process, nobody can escape it and there are only 2 options for everyone – either get old or die young.
As for work, I think that there are several factors affecting people over 60(ish) finding employment and it actually starts to get harder to find work after about 40.
Current employees (especially management in a “thrive in a lively environment” type of company ) are threatened by an older persons experience and knowledge,especially if the older person is “downsizing” their job.
HR departments are now beginning to use automated systems to sort job applications, and the systems have been programmed to reject applications based on age, illegal? discrimination? sure… but try and prove it.
Companies are scared that an older person will use more sick time and be expensive for their medical insurance plans.
The impression that an older person is mentally slower, this is not true. What is true is that each individual has different mental capacities regardless of age. I have met some dumb as a rock 20 year olds and some extremely sharp 80 year olds.
Just be who you are regardless of chronological age. Live according to your financial, physical and mental capabilities. If a person wants to think of themselves as aged, then so be it, and “so what” anyway. I think that the worst thing for anyone t do is to try and act 20 if you are 60, “the oldest swinger in town” syndrome.
“This getting older ain’t for cowards.
This getting older’s a lot to go through….”
John Mellencamp “Don’t Need This Body”
At 42, I hope to keep aging with acceptance and grace. I pray my mind stays sharp even as my body tires!