I remember a time when I was
about ten listening to an
adult conversation where two
women were talking about their
past: “I remember twenty years
ago when I was married.” “Yeah,
things were so different then.”
The thought came to me that I
was so young and my only memories
were not so far behind me. What
could I say? “I remember when I
lost my first tooth.” “I remember
my first day of kindergarten.” How
old would I have to be to think like
these ladies? What would it be like
to have thoughts that could reach
so far back in time?
Don’t ask me to look back now.
There’s so much to remember. I can
tell you since my childhood I’ve lost
more than one tooth. As a matter
of fact, I think my dentist built an
addition on to his house with all
the teeth I’ve had either extracted
or repaired. I’ve said in the past,
“Smile while you still have teeth,”
and I meant it.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately
(which is in and of itself unusual).
What stands out that I can remember
or think about the last twenty
or thirty years of my life? Gotta tell
you, what happened to me most
likely happened to you. So, let me
share what I recall or have learned
about our “Golden Years.” Gold
is precious and life is precious,
so naming our lives at this time
“golden” is very appropriate and
we should try to enjoy the richness
that this “gold” provides us.
I think these days are the best.
If you look back at old photos,
people didn’t look as youthful as
they really were. Was it the style?
Who knows? Maybe the times were
harder to live through. Whereby
now, although everyone looks
younger, I have the feeling inside
every older person is a younger
person wondering what the hell
Some say sixty is the new fifty.
Today we might call them the “sexy
sixties.” There are many advantages
in being sixty…ask an eighty-yearold.
Actually, being sixty is no different
than being fifty except that
you’re ten years closer
to being seventy, or shall
we say the “Seductive
Seventies?” Let’s go
further. I think we can
say “Elegant Eighties.”
How about the “Naughty
Nineties?” One hundred
is the best! I can’t think of
an appropriate title for a
Nothing would be good
Sure, stuff happens as
we get older, but there’s a lot that
can be said that’s humorous about
aging. I decided to go on a mission
to affirm that. You know we really
shouldn’t get weird about getting
older. Think about it. Our age is
merely the number of years the
world has been enjoying us. Ask
our grandchildren? There’s nothing
sweeter than a grandchild’s smile
and reaching up to hug you, or
in some cases all six feet of them
bending down to kiss you.
Dr. Benjamin Spock wrote books
on rearing children. Who’s going
to write the definitive book about
us on aging? Dr. Krankite? I know
there are millions of titles which
discuss aging. Been there done that.
Not interested. I want a reference
book that gives me alternative ways
to deal with aging. How about a
chapter in a book that says: “How
Does an Older Woman Keep Her
Youth? My answer would be: “By
giving her lots of money.” Another
chapter might be, “How Can You
Tell You’re Getting Old?” My
answer would be, “When getting a
little action means your laxative is
working.” You know, serious stuff
of that nature.
In parenting young children,
Dr. Spock wrote about nutrition,
medication, teething, sleep problems,
temper tantrums, bathroom
habits and a hundred other things.
Come to think about it, nothing
changes as we grow older. Don’t we
discuss the same things now? With
nutrition, most of us know what to
eat, but is it okay to have dairy in
the form of cake? In my case, you
know I’m talking about cheesecake.
If I have that instead of a piece of
cheese or maybe a grilled cheese
(cake) sandwich is that okay? Can’t
that be considered nutritious? It’s
just a variation!
We don’t need to think about
teething. Our teeth aren’t growing
in. They’re falling out. How come
the tooth fairy isn’t around for us?
Who could be our tooth fairy? Our
dentists? No! They taketh and we
payeth. Shouldn’t we get some kind
of rebate? That would work instead
of a tooth fairy! The dentists took
care of our teeth and now they’re
falling out. There’s some inequity
there. Shouldn’t dental work
come with some kind of twenty
year warranty, like a roof? As a
tooth fairy I must have given away
wads of money for all the teeth I
found under each child’s pillow.
At one point I was getting pillow
burn on my wrists because those
tiny teeth were falling out so fast
and I was always shoving dollars
in their place under the pillow. As
for us, when discussing teeth, we
now have a new alternative called
implants. Wait! Is that really a new
idea? Was the news about George
Washington who purportedly wore
teeth made of wood or whale bone
that were hammered into his jaw
a lie? How would we know? He
Now as far as medications go, I
would say to a person my age, when
traveling, always take two suitcases.
Put your clothes in the overnight
bag so you can fill your suitcase
with your pills. Come to think of
it, I even put my Ace bandages, my
cane, my orthopedic shoes and Biofreeze
in with my clothes. Don’t
want them to take space away
from the room for my meds.
When we talk about sleep,
what can I say? I understand
that people sleep more soundly
as they get older. The problem
is that it’s usually in the afternoon.
It was a different story
when my kids woke up during
the night. I’d cradle them and
feed them a bottle of warm milk
and they’d fall back asleep. If
I wake up during the night,
my doctor says, “Have a small
snack and something warm and
then go back to bed.” Many times,
it’s hard to find room in my bed to
sleep with the “small snack” I’ve
made for myself. The “something
warm” is a whole other story. Any
I don’t know what to say about
bathroom habits that’ll make life
easier for me except, luckily, I love
The following things I’ve discovered
in my research don’t make
life too much easier but certainly
gave me “food for thought” (food
again?) and a smile on my face.
Does “food for thought” have the
same calories as real food? Does it
fill your brain the same way food
fills your stomach? I’d rather
have a “fullness of thought” than
a distended stomach. One time I
pulled in my stomach so much that
I wound up with a hernia.
We all have some thoughts
about aging, okay! Let’s call it
maturing. At this time of life, we
now know our way around, but at
this point some of us don’t want
to go anywhere. Happily, accept
this is as where we are. Do we have
a choice? Just go with the flow.
Stay tough, but not too tough. My
friend’s grandmother was really a
tough woman. She buried three
husbands and two of them were
Leave room to celebrate.
Remember: You’re really not old.
You’re youthfully challenged.
*Author’s note: Some of these
statements are direct quotes taken
from anonymous writers. 24 NORTH SHORE TOWERS COURIER ¢ May 2019