You may recall, if you are a friend or family member of mine or a regular reader of this blog (please pretend with me that there might be regular readers who aren’t friends or family members), that I had some issues with turning 50.
The problem, I realized after much introspection, was that I had always thought of people who were 50 as being old, and I wasn’t ready to be old.
Two more years have passed. Despite ulcers and anemia, a recent check-up proves I’m healthy.
I’m still walking frequently — generally about five miles four times a week and on one gloomy Saturday recently, I took a 15 mile stroll. I can still do all the things I’ve ever been able to do — I just don’t do them as quickly or gracefully, and it takes me longer to catch my breath.
I come from healthy stock and may well have another 30 or so years left, unless I die in a fiery car crash. But at the same time, I find that being 52 means that I am frequently aware of my age. This strikes me at strange times in strange ways. For example:
- I’ve been married for 59% of my life.
- When Mozart was my age, he’d been dead for 17 years.
- When I was the age of my older daughter, I’d been married for two years.
- When I was born, World War II had only been over for 13 years. The Gulf War ended 19 years ago.
- When I was born, the last surviving Civil War soldier had only been dead for two years.
- When I was a child, I might very possibly have seen an elderly person who, when he or she was a child, saw an elderly person who, when he or she was a child, saw George Washington.
- When I was born, Dwight Eisenhower was President.
And the one that makes me feel the oldest …
- I am now 14 years older than my mother-in-law was when I met her.