About: age is just a (biggish) number

The me I think I am

The me I think I am

This is a blog about aging. Actually, maybe not. It’s a blog inspired by age – my age.

I turned 50 and thought –  in an intellectual sort of way – that I’m getting old. At 50, my mother had three grown-up kids, one grandmother already had seven grandchildren and the other was about to die.

But the thing is; I don’t feel old!

I still feel like the mucky kid who manages to get icecream all over her.

I still feel like the mucky kid who manages to get icecream all over her.

Because age is relative, right. When you’re a kid there is a kind of chasm between you and THE OLDER GENERATION. All your teachers seem old; your mum and dad are old, your grandparents are ancient, and if, like me you had great grandparents … well I think the word I’m looking for is prehistoric.

Then you grow up and meet someone who taught you at high school and they haven’t fossilised yet. The fact that they don’t remember you isn’t dementia – it’s that they taught thousands of sullen teenagers while you only had one Mr. M for fifth form English.

Everyone you know starts having kids and one day you meet a friend from playcentre and she tells you her son (whose fifth birthday party you went to) has started university. Your own child becomes taller than you – and not only understands the “I really shouldn’t laugh at this” syphilis joke – but can make one of his own. Suddenly you are THE OLDER GENERATION.

I was going to a costume party, but when I dashed into the local bottle store to buy wine, the guy there didn't bat an eyelid. Perhaps I'm just meant to be a punk?

I was going to a costume party, but when I dashed into the local bottle store to buy wine, the guy there didn’t bat an eyelid. Perhaps I’m just meant to be a punk?

But that’s ok, ‘cos not only do I not feel old, I actually feel better than I ever have – maybe not physically, but emotionally and intellectually. I am stronger, braver, funnier, more compassionate, more resilient and much more confident.

I’m also way more opinionated! And I guess that’s what this blog is about; a journey through my thoughts and impressions and beliefs shaped by the 50 years that have gone, and the days that pass now.

Thanks for reading this; perhaps you want to take the journey with me.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering … ZimmerBitch?

… well she’s the avatar I created in my son’s PS3 skating game; a funky old lady who had swapped her zimmerframe for a skateboard.

I had hopes that I could dress her “nana style” and film this cool skating granny, thereby making me a YouTube star. Sadly – and inexplicably – the game didn’t offer grey as a hair colour – nor tweed skirts, twinsets, baggy tights, orthopaedic shoes and crocodile handbags in the wardrobe options. So ZimmerBitch doesn’t ride the virtual mean streets of YouTube – YET!!!

178 thoughts on “About: age is just a (biggish) number

  1. Oh, I so get all that even if I haven’t quite reached the same milestone yet. Last year I officially became a parent to an adult. Yikes. But it doesn’t matter really as I’ll always be 23 in my head. That’s why I try and socialise with 20- and 30-somethings. They’re my people.
    Sorry it took a little while to get here. Life is busy. And sometimes I like to sleep.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Pingback: “A Pathway to Joy” | Zebra's Child

  3. Hi! This is my first comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you I
    really enjoy reading through your posts. Can you recommend any
    other blogs/websites/forums that go over the same topics?
    Thanks a lot!

    Like

  4. I recently reached 50 and, as you say, it doesn’t mean that you’re “old.” I’ve learned that your body gets a second wind. If you’re into running, for instance, you can be a better runner after 50 than when you were in your 20s. And, certainly, that carries over to all sorts of other things. It’s also a time for greater clarity. A perfect time to go after your creative pursuits.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Henry. I agree. I think one of the most important things that happened was a getting rid of lots of emotional baggage. Essentially, I realised I cared a lot less about what people thought of me than what I think of them. That has been very liberating and I think it does feed into creativity. Without the awful self-censoring lens, it’s easier to take risks. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thoughts; I really appreciate it.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I know what you mean, a wonderful friend and her daughter are coming to visit us at the end of this month. The last time they were both here the now 23 year old daughter was four and a half, adored tutu’s and pink and Himself and I hadn’t had kids yet. How time flies… Yes, we have seen them when we have been back on regular visits to NZ, but even then the years have gone both slowly day by day and simultaneously disappeared in the blink of an eye.
    LOVE the idea of Zimmerbitch LOL …. How about a zimmer frame with a six cylinder V8 attached? … any avatar options for that???

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Age is so relative and like you I feel like I’m only getting stronger with age. I’m in my 40’s but have always felt that my best years will come in my 50’s. I don’t know why but have always felt that. Love your blog!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Oh, I thought the ‘zimmer’ part meant you played the zimmer…or is that zither?!
    I view the ‘age’ thing, that others want to foist on us, in the same vein as ‘never let anyone dull your sparkle’…words from last year’s wonderful art calendar. That page hangs in my kitchen where I can see it all the time! I like your experimental outlook with your photography!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. I’d forgotten about zithers (I think it’s zither) til now. I think one of my teachers at primary school had one. Most people I know would probably agree that they have improved with age, so I sometimes suspect that ageism is a huge conspiracy by the young to stop us having fun. Cheers, Su.

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  8. 53 going in 23, cycling the daily commute to work, separated from my adorable but rapidly ageing partner (and looking forward to a new adventure by myself, doing what I want), Mum to two gorgeous young adults…life is good, looking forward to reading about yours 🙂

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  9. As someone recently on the wrong side of 50, I’m so with you! In my head, I’m still in my 20’s. The best years of my life!! Oh and on the former teacher thing: I have come across some of my former teachers and have ended up having some of them as friends and colleagues. Wheels within wheels. Wonderful world we live in!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. LOL the photo of you going to that party is so Gothic…loved this post…have a great day keep sharing…your friend Jackie

    Like

    • Thanks Stuart. I think the punk me is probably the most authentic. Or perhaps just the most nostalgic. Aging gets such bad press, but I haven’t met many people who don’t think — like us — that they’ve improved with age. I’m happy to say that while I do feel wiser and more knowledgeable, the beard is still eluding me. Thanks for stopping by. Cheers. Su.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. …love your intro!!! Well written 🙂 So many “older” people tell me the same thing… They wouldn’t want to swap – for they are more mature and “further” in life as the “younger ones”. I start to understand that 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I am enjoying your blog. There is an opportunity to continue to create ourselves in different ways as we get older. I care far less what people think and a lot more often ask myself, “Why not?” In fact, that is exactly how I ended up teaching myself about blogging. “Why not? What if I could connect with others who are struggling through their day and help them to feel less alone in the world? Why not give it a try?”

    Liked by 1 person

    • I totally agree. I heard someone say that as she ages she thinks not about what people think of her, but what she thinks about them. And it is liberating not to waste time on those who drain and diminish us, but instead use it exploring — as you’re doing the “why not”.

      Liked by 1 person

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