Old just ain’t what it used to be

August 20th, 2014

The word old used to carry a mantel of respect. An old person was one who had achieved something, arrived, had matured. Grandfathers and grandmothers were the revered ones for having lived through entire generations of events, decisions, heartbreaks, and victories. Experiences were accumulated to be miraculously transformed into armor plate, impervious to the vagaries of youth which can be whisked away in an instant. As an ancient one you could bespeak of all that you’ve seen, the heroes you’ve met, the travel that had broadened your horizons.

The irony of old and this view of old is that it is, well, old. It appears we don’t go there any more.

To be old these days is like being a rock on the side of the stream–because the rock lies to one side and is, for all intents and purposes, immobile. It holds little meaning for those in the swift flowing stream going by. Hardly worth a glance if you are caught up in the rush called “the real world” and whisked off down-stream. You are being ignored and the ignored are the isolated. The isolated are the lonely. The lonely suffer.

You are an old duffer. A senior. A “pardner.” An old man or old lady. You have become old-fashioned. Gramps! Granny! You are only an insignificant part of the old guard. You are not only an old goat, alas, you are probably no longer randy.

Being old just ain’t what it used to be.

Call to action!

So! Seniors. How are we to treat such villainy? Have we really closed shop? Are we to be tossed to the shore like so much flotsam? Shall we roll over with these kicks adding additional agony to the scars of advanced years? Or, are we going to hold our canes high and shout “No more!” Old ain’t that bad! Let us take our stand against this infamy!

Be proud.

Don’t give in to public opinion. You deserve those wrinkles. You got them the hard way–by living through the sad times, the hard times, and, yes, the fun times and the rewarding times.

Seek the benefits.

You don’t have to stand in line on a Saturday morning to wait for anything. You can do that on Tuesday. And, while the working crowd is nicely tucked away in the workplace, you can go to the barber or hairdresser without having to fight the crowds.

Don’t get stuck in time.

Being a senior is not limited to cheaper movie tickets. Humans of all ages are not made up of just what we used to be. We are not locked in the good old days, nor condemned to bemoan ages long gone. Life is not all about youth. Life is not only about the future. Life, thank you very much, is richer than that. Right here. Right now. No matter how old you are.

Get with it.

Okay. You don’t like computers. I get it. But you need to dip your hand in. So what you’ve been tossed to the riverbank. That doesn’t mean you can’t fish! Toss a line back in; see what you catch. You don’t have to be the world’s foremost computer expert but a very large world of keeping in touch will open up for you by learning how to: email, use Skype, and browse the internet. You can do every one of these on a tablet or computer.

How is retirement going for you?

Do you have any suggestions for folks who are struggling with personal issues around aging? Until next time…

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