Aging Without Grace

A friend of mine came home from Pilates and texted me that someone at the end of the class had said, “You did really well!” She was more than clearly annoyed. “Why wouldn’t I do well?” she wondered. “And what right do they have to judge me?” I’ve noticed that a lot of us get to a certain age and become little testy when they think somebody’s statement might smack a tiny bit of ageism. I get it. I can feel the hackles on the back of my neck start to stand up whenever someone uses the expression “at your age”, which I hear more and more frequently. Most of the time it’s probably meant as a compliment but I have to try really hard not to be judgy. Not long ago I actually “broke up” with a potentially new doctor who, when I asked if she thought I might need cholesterol medication at some point in the future, said to me, “At your age, why would you bother?!” That was the end of the possibility of that woman being my primary care physician. One person told me she dislikes it when other people, especially children, open doors for her. On that, I disagree. I’ll take that anytime, anywhere. And I especially like it when it’s a kid doing the door opening. Gives me a chance to practice gratitude. I’ve decided the answer is not to necessarily age gracefully but to greet it with as much joy as possible. I mean, what’s the alternative? Jessica Lange is 75 and openly talking about her age while starring in a new Broadway play. Lauren Hutton is 80 and sharing that information, complete with untouched pictures of herself and no plastic surgery. Rita Moreno is 92, for crying out loud, and she’s not lying about it either. The real kicker for me, however, is Mick Jagger at 80. Though my sixteen-year-old granddaughter thinks he dances like a chicken, I’m in awe. The obvious answer to aging well is sex, drugs and rock and roll.


Photo courtesy Efraimstochter at




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1 Response

  1. Billie Tveit says:

    Mick has always danced like a chicken.

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