Saturday, 9 March 2013

The upside of being seventy

...and let;'s face it, there aren't many But no matter. Yesterday evening, I did something I never thought I'd do.

But I'll start with G. G looks amazing for her age, and loves to tell people she's 97. She does it all the time. We all know she's 97, and all hope to look as good as she does if/when we make it. But I'm never going to do that, I thought. Getting old is bad enough, but telling everyone your age? Naaah.
Not for me.

Until last night.

Scene: church choir practice
Characters: New Alto and me

Conversation, as follows:

Me: (not fishing at all at this stage) I'm going to my daughter's fortieth, so I won't be here on Sunday.
New Alto: Gosh! Wow! My goodness! You can't be the mother of someone of forty! You don't look nearly old enough!
Me: (bridling) I'm seventy (thinks: bring it on! I'm loving this!)
New Alto: Gosh! Wow! I can't believe it etc etc
Me (getting into the swing): Yes. And I've got a son of forty-one.
New Alto: Wow! Gosh! etc etc
Me (now really over-egging the pudding): and I've got more sons, of thirty-two and thirty-five.

In the cold light of day, I feel just a tiny bit ashamed. But only a tiny bit. And I have to bear in  mind that (a) the lighting wasn't too good and (b) whatever I may or may not look like, at my age, I would  have to think twice before buying a kitten...

28 comments:

  1. Age is just a number, Frances it how you feel inside what really counts. My dear mum is in a wheelchair and needs 24/7 care. She can't move her arms or legs and has been like it for about six years. I'm excercising every day, watching my diet i.e plenty of fresh friut & veggies and hoping that I can keep fit. I'm not that worried about growing older, but worried about not being able to look after myself.
    My friend Ivy(Elizabeth Lord Author) is 84 and is always on the go and now to hear about your friend G who's 97. It's great. Last night, on the local new, there was an old boy who was 92 who was complaining about the local bus service, because he had just recently had to give up driving... Bless him, he still want to get out and about and he didn't look a day over 75 :-)
    I want to be like all of them still having things to do, places to go and people to meet.

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    1. I think the problem is other people's (and one's - or my own!)perceptions of age, Paula. The 'just a number' thing works only up to a point, even though it my be true.

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  2. If I can age gracefully like G., I won't mind turning 97. Or 98, for that matter. But I guess like everybody else what I fear most about getting old is becoming dependent on other people for even the most banal tasks, such as getting up in the morning, wash, dress and have breakfast. And I'll miss it terribly if/when the time comes that I can't run, skip and dance anymore.

    Hehe love the Wow! Gosh! conversation :-)

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    1. if you keep on skipping etc you'll probably be able to do it for ever. But you will have to practise every day!

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  3. Yeh, we all get there in the end. My eldest son is 45 and I'm 66 you know...la de la...

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  4. In your profile picture you look fabulous.......and I am so jealous that you have 3 sons..how wonderful.

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    1. That photo was taken a couple of years ago! Yes- the sons (and the daughter) are wonderful!

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  5. I sometimes feel older than I am because of pain problems (and early retirement from work)... On the other hand I just LOVED Harry Potter (still do, but hype was reading them as they were being published)... I do think age is kindofa relative thing... ;)

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    1. I couldn't take Harry Potter (I don't like fantasy) but greatly admire JK, and think she fully deserves her success.

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  6. My goodness, Frances, when you said in an earlier post that you had "a very big birthday" coming up, I had no idea you meant your seventieth! In your photo you look maybe 50 tops.

    I will be 72 in a couple of weeks but feel much younger -- or did until I came down with shingles last week. No fun.

    My mother died at 47 and my dad at 60, but my maternal grandfather lived to be almost 96. So as the years passed I never knew what to expect in terms of length of days. I do know this, though: Every day is a gift.

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    1. Shingles - how horrible. I do hope you're feeling better now.

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  7. Well, I had no idea you were that age, Frances! I love the fact we can very rarely tell a woman's age these days.

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  8. I find I do that with the 'I've got theree grandchildren' bit - just to see the look on people's faces. I had my first when I was only 43!

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  9. Just returned from a party for a 73 year old, and someone thought I was his daughter . I am 67.! Nice . Frances. ...you don't look 70 .

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    1. Frances, how lovely! I was recently at a party, and someone thought I was my husband's daughter. Not so good for him, but he really doesn't care. Maybe men don't...

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  10. I had thought your special birthday was your fiftieth, Frances. You look amazing. I think your fabulous sense of humour preserves you so well.

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    1. So I'll have to keep laughing, Joanna...

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  11. Some people seem old at 40, others live a very long time yet never seem to become old.

    I'd assumed you had your first child at 16.

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  12. For me 50 to 70 were the golden years when I felt younger than my age and full of vim and vigor. After 70 things began to change and I began to slow down, not down that slippery slope to oblivion, but merely a slowing in general. However, during my 70s I did manage to finish my novel...I said often and loudly to anyone within range of my southern accent that I'd write when I retired! Oh, famous words of a wantabe novelist! I did write and I wrote and then some until I realized my work was sophomoric at best and I stopped with a final draft, put it away, and considered it a laborious experiment into the world of romance writing, which before I, in my snobbishness, always thought was easy and not really creative!

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    1. But Jill, if you enjoyed the writing, then that's the main thing. I'm sure that's why most of us do it. Publication is rarely guaranteed!

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  13. Maybe its the horse riding that does it - it's supposed to be very good for you!

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  14. Good for you so long as you stay on, Jenny...

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