Women of a Certain Age

Leeann writes about what it’s like to be our age. My main old-age hang-up – aside from the scary forgetting what I was thinking about five seconds ago that everyone gets – is feeling like things I’ve done and been into most of my life are now “old lady things” and that people will see them as evidence that I am over the hill. Like sensible shoes. I have worn high heels but mostly I have always worn flats or low, wedge heels. Always. Even when I was in my 20’s. That’s always made me feel a wee bit superior because I was smart enough to be kind to my feet instead of being a slave to fashion. Now I’m just like the rest of the old ladies.

I sew on a 100+/- year old treadle sewing machine. Who does that? Grannies, that’s who. I’ve always thought it was cool because hardly anyone else uses one, and certainly no young people were using them. Lots of people have them and they just sit in the corner, folded up, holding a bouquet of flowers or something. I actually use mine and that’s cool because it’s unique and because I’ve been “green” since green was nothing but a color. But now I’m getting to the age when people are going to think, “Poor old thing can’t handle a modern, electric sewing machine.”

And hot tea. Lots of people drink tea but when you live in the U.S. and you get to a certain age, tea is an old lady thing. And classical music. Only old people listen to that, right? And pink slacks. I wouldn’t even have thought of that one but my husband told me that only old ladies wear pink slacks. (Thanks, dear.) It seems like more than half the stuff I like is now “old lady stuff” and I want to tell everyone, “Hey, I’ve always done this and when I was in my 20’s and 30’s it was cool because nobody else was doing it. I was a hipster before they even invented the word.” But I never get the chance and it doesn’t matter anyway. Nothing an old person does is cool and telling people you used to be cool is really not cool.

But wait! Let me tell you about my smart phone.

6 thoughts on “Women of a Certain Age

  1. fillyjonk

    I liked “old lady things” even when I was in my 20s so I don’t really stress about that. I’d sew on a treadle machine if I had one, because the treadling motion is soothing, like rocking in a rocking chair. (Wait. That’s an “old lady” thing too).

    What gets to me is the health stuff. I used to think of myself as a “disgustingly healthy person” but in the past year I’ve developed two chronic conditions that I have to take medications for and that bothers me. (Well, one of them, hives, isn’t specifically an “old lady disease”)

    I have a refrigerator magnet that says, “When I am old, I will wear purple…..but *never* with a red hat.” Yeah, I so will not be joining the Red Hat Ladies when I hit 50….that kind of thing just doesn’t appeal.

  2. LeeAnn

    I’m especially worried about becoming one of those old ladies who tries to prove with every waking moment how not-old they are. “Frisky. Feisty.” Words I hope never are used to describe me.
    Crazy as a shithouse rat? I can live with that one.

  3. fillyjonk

    Oh man, saints preserve us from having to be frisky or feisty when we get old.

    When I get old I am going to be just that: old. I am going to welcome not having to prove anything to anybody, and that includes not having to be frisky or feisty or act like one of the flippin’ Golden Girls.

  4. Hippie

    My wife is seven years younger than I am, and she doesn’t wear high heels. (Because they’re stupid, even I as a man will say that.) She would probably try to use a treadle machine if she had one. She does sometimes drink hot tea.

    Oh, and you aren’t a Hipster. Being a hipster is more about feeling superior to others for secretly spending hundreds of dollars on homeless-person clothes, bad glasses, terrible music, and for some reason, apple products. On yeah, and mechanically inferior bicycles.

  5. Nicole

    I see what you are getting at. I realize I have many of the same things. When we are young, it’s cool and hip to do things like adults. Now that we are older, it just makes us our age. Sigh.

    I just got asked today by my doctor if I’d had any hot flashes yet. /groan

    Ah, well, I plan to continue living how I want to live. Hot tea and pink slacks and appearances be damned 🙂

  6. CGHill

    Not that you need an argument against high heels, but Shoebunny this week has a shot of Jennifer Aniston, quite a few years younger than you, wearing some delightfully insubstantial sandals, and the damage is distressingly apparent.

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