First of all, what is a putdown? An insult or criticism, but could it just be an innocent comment that we misinterpret? It's a fine line we are treading here. Consider this experience I had a few days ago at the eye doctor's office with one of his assistants. A young girl (twenty something) kept calling me "dear." For some reason that always rubs me the wrong way. You wouldn't call someone your own age "dear." They would probably wonder what was wrong with you. But this girl/woman called me that at least twice. Each time I felt totally insulted, but controlled my urge to set her straight. Telling her that I may look old to her, but I am not 70 yet and won't be ready to be called "dear," "sweetie," or "honey" until I have one foot in a rest home, and I don't plan on doing that.
I had this conversation going on in my mind or what to say to her to NOT be insulting but to make her aware that her casual labeling of me with such endearing terms was not pleasing me. In fact, I'm sure my blood pressure went up several notches during the hour long exam and it wasn't from choosing "1" or "2" as my eyes were tested. I resisted the impulse to talk to the good eye doctor about my feelings as I wasn't sure how he would react or what he would say to me or his assistant. So I decided to just blog about it.
Why do we resist aging and want to be younger, slimmer, trimmer, and have face lifts, botox treatments and tummy lifts or color our gray away? Why can't we just accept ourselves as we are? Mature, rational, wise beings full of life's experiences. A SURVIVOR of all that life has given us and will give us. Remembering that none of us get out of this life alive. But labeled we are as "senior citizens," "elderly," "AARP members"-Association of American Retired People at age 50, etc. Living in an "active retirement community" where we are among the youngest has been a challenge for us but I have made some really great friends and been so impressed by the quality of people I have met. What's your feelings about aging as you watch your kids once youngsters move towards becoming middle age?