ROCKING CHAIR OF AGES
So I pIcked up the boy from school on Friday after a long day at the day job. Just wanted to relax, maybe watch the news or read a little before dinner.
All he wanted to do was have a foot race around the block.
But I’m a good sport, so off we went.
“On your mark. Get set. Go!”
We ran and ran,navigating the concrete rectangle our house is on. And when finally we crossed the finish line…
The boy kicked my butt.
I didn’t really hold back all that much. I did run, largely because the boy kept looking back over his shoulder to make sure I was. I’m in pretty good shape,work out regularly. But I was sucking wind by the end of that short run. True, I was tired from work. He played all day. On this warm July day, he was in shorts and tennis shoes. I wore long pants, a tie and clunky hard soles. He’s five and I’m…not.
But still…beat by a FIVE-YEAR-OLD!?!?
Earlier in the day, I had a meeting with my insurance man to go over policies and crap. (Wanna be bored? Read a life insurance or homeowners policy.) My agent is “almost 40”. Younger than me. That freaks me out a little. I think my doctor is younger than me too. I’m not really old school, I don’t think, but this does give me pause. I feel more secure when the people controlling such important aspects of my life – health and finance – are older than me. Would you rather be told what to do by wise, old grandad who has been many places and seen many things, or your kid brother who can’t find the who flings cat poop at your head?
At my day job, increasingly among when I’m in a group of colleagues, I’m not the youngest one in the room. Scarier still, the young ones more and more look to me for answers, like I actually have some.
I’m not ready to be an elder statesman. I’m not ready to be an elder anything. But somehow, I seem to be aging into it.
A few years ago, I sprained my back picking up a pair of pants from the floor. “This has never happened to you before?” The doctor asked. “No,” I said, “Congratulations. You’re 40.”
The point of all this is not that I feel old. I’m not really even sure what that means? Aches and pains? Confusion about popular culture? Preoccupation with mortality? That all sounds too…cliché?
I think the point is that life moves pretty fast, but it’s not just the world that’s changing. So are you and your place in that world. Don’t fear it, don’t revere it, just own it and roll with it.
Also, my kid should have TV time taken away. Show the old man some respect, whipper-snapper.