Age is a funny thing it's relative, personal, and it's tied to time which is such an elastic concept that there seems to be no rhyme or reason. The passage of time is completely esoteric. You certainly can't pin it down.
Yesterday The Best Friend had a birthday. She was treated to the dubious pleasure of TLOML and I singing Happy Birthday onto her answering machine. The Best Friend was one of the youngest women in our class at school. In June I will turn 50 and TLOML hits her half century in November. Strangely,The Chef, who was featured recently in a newspaper article has managed to only be 47.... Hmmm very interesting, cause I am almost certain that she was actually older than me! LOL. Oh well, we know that there are some things that can halt the passage of time and most of them have to do with wealth and fame. I don't blame The Chef really; after all, 50 is a VERY BIG number!
Jazz, my blogging fibro sister, has written a great blog about feeling older than she is and rather than repeat all the things I wanted to say that she has already said I will just link to her here (I'm sure she won't mind). It's a great blog. So often I have ideas fermenting in my brain getting close to becoming a blog and Jazz will jump in just before I am ready to write it and steal all my thunder! Sometimes we seem to be eerily in sync.
My take on this feeling older actually needs to be credited to a conversation I had with The Best Friend a couple of months ago. She pointed out the way elderly people negotiate their way through a crowd. Many/most/perhaps all seniors move near other people with a visible hyper-vigilance. This isn't "defensive driving", it's "defensive walking". Keeping a very close eye on anyone else who is moving nearby and testing the ground before putting all weight on the leading foot has become a way of life for me. I get it, I really get how elderly people feel out in the world. I know what it's like to fear an accidental bump with a stranger - I know because it hurts! It hurts like (insert expletive of your choice) when I get jostled in a stupidmarket queue or when someone laughing unexpectedly steps back into me and it triggers a series of painful spasms that radiate from either the site of impact or from the part of me that moves unexpectedly to save myself. I now travel the world with the wary, skepticism of a bona fide Methuselah!
When I was a kid I never took a staircase at less than two steps at a time; almost every time I ran down steps I would jump down the last five or six. I touched a banister only to vault out of the stairs or down to the next flight. There were two speeds, flat out and stopped. Those days are gone. Now I traverse the globe with care, caution, and a desperate desire to anticipate the movements of any other things that move!
Last night I knocked over a glass of water. Startled myself which hurt my back. Dropped to my knees to wipe up the spillage which caused stabbing pains to explode from both knees. Reached under the bed with the bathmat and seriously popped some kind of tendon in my right shoulder. Then stood up and collapsed on the bed groaning in pain.... see what happens when I am surprised? Thank goodness TLOML was there to take over and clean up my mess. The knees and shoulder have yet to relent. So do I feel older than I am - damn straight I do. Do I move like someone older than I am - pretty much all the time (unless I forget or react and do something like I did with wiping up the spill last night). Do I have that suspicious hyper-vigilance about how other people are moving? Yep, I do.
So to all my geriatric followers (of whom I have none) I get it! I know you are careful and that the cranky look on your face is actually fear. I, like you, fear the unexpected. I don't need to bungee jump for thrills - walking through a crowd is about as much excitement as I can stand!