Thursday, March 5, 2009

Insult To Injury

I should have seen it coming. Here I am, staring down the double-barrel of a milestone birthday.
FIFTY. Five decades. Half a century. Not able to call myself "middle aged" because seriously, most folks don't live to 100.
Ok, I was dealing with it. Attempting to get excited about the prospect of reaching this "golden" phase of life. All sorts of famous, wonderful people claim that the best part of life begins at 50. Oprah. Cher. Goldie Hawn. All folks with sufficient funds to lift, tuck and otherwise repair the ravages of old age.
Of course, there are the positives and negatives that inevitably come with any milestone. On surveys I am now grouped with the "45-60" gang. Not so bad. Being told by the doctor that "we don't heal as well as we used to at your age" (little putz. Is he even old enough to have graduated from high school, let alone med school?!?!?) and further humiliation at eye doctor. "Bifocals may be the way to go this time...." and the realization that there are just some things I won't ever do.
I won't ever fly an F14, be a rock star, or climb Mount Everest. the closest to any of these activities I achieve at this point is flying around in my Dodge Caravan, playing my guitar for an audience of two (both canine) and scaling the mountain of laundry that seems to accumulate wherever my teenager drops her things. I've come to embrace and cherish all of these things as how I chose to live my life. However, I was utterly unprepared this afternoon to go out to my mailbox and pull out the mail, casually leafing through it on my little front porch. Then I saw it.

A welcome to old age letter from AARP
! ! ! ! !
I am certain that the blood curdling scream that found its way from my antiquated, wheezy old lungs must have frightened the entire neighborhood. Dogs as far away as Kentucky howled in commiseration with my wails of humiliation. I've faced adversity before about my age. My oldest nephew once said to me when he was just a small lad of seven or eight, "WOW Aunt Donna! You were born in the FIFTIES??? Did you know FONZIE?"
Now all I have to do is pick out my next car. I'm leaning toward a blue-green buick with curb feelers.