I had a birthday last week (though it feels like ages ago). Although I’m not exactly old, I’m not young either. Until this year, I’ve never really felt old but here’s how it hit me that I am:
1. A lot of my peers have risen to high positions in their line of work. I’ve always associated judges, politicians, high-profile doctors and lawyers, executives, etc. as friends/contacts of my parents. Not anymore.
2. I’m hearing more news about people my age who’ve recently passed away. News of passing used to be about the older generation: parents of friends or our older relatives (uncles, aunts, etc.)
3. Some of my peers are starting to suffer from an ailment. What used to be diseases of the old like heart problems, arthritis, diabetes, hypertension, etc. now ails people my age. Of course, I know that those diseases are hitting us younger these days but still…
4. I have former classmates who are now grandparents. Yeah, for sure, they started early but there’s nothing like the reality of grandchildren that says “new generation.”
5. I have real-life problems. Don’t get me wrong. That’s not to say I’ve never had a problem before. Although I’ve had many of them (as people normally do), they were quite easy and manageable since I’m very solution- and task-oriented. This time, however, we’re dealing with something that I have no control over.
When the doctors and studies tell you that the best solution has a 30-40% chance to work, that’s a big problem! No amount of my abilities and efforts could guarantee an outcome and that, to me, sure sounds like a real-life, old-person problem.
Boy, do I feel old…