I apologize if either of us has been talking about age too much in this blog. Other than the 57-thing, this ride has nothing to do with age. Unfortunately, I keep bringing it up because I have an age problem.
Basically, my problem is that I spent most of my childhood being the youngest – the youngest cousin, the youngest amongst my friends, the youngest in my college class. And people sometimes called me a baby, which some might consider a term of endearment, but I’ve always considered an insult.
A baby, by definition, is naïve and innocent and knows nothing, and I’m pretty sure that doesn’t describe me. Besides, as an AARP member, I think this baby thing is just getting – well – old. But now many of friends are younger than me, and I sometimes pull the age card on them, because I love being older and not the baby. Which isn’t nice, and I should stop.
Talking about age and pointing out age differences (some people define a vast difference as one year), is just a way to make people less equal. And that’s wrong, so I don’t want to go there in this blog. Besides, wanting people to think I’m old is dumb, because, as Dana and I learned a few years ago, all roads lead to Meadow Brook.
We learned about Meadow Brook thanks to my mother. My mom lived independently for 22 years after my father died. Then, one day she called me and said “This is it. I’m done. I need to move up by you, into one of those places.” And since I was a well-trained child, I found one of those places for her. It was an assisted living facility called Meadow Lodge.
For some reason, even though my mother’s mind stayed sharp right until the end, she never could get her head around the name Meadow Lodge, and insisted on calling it Meadow Brook. And so Dana and I started referring to assisted living, and nursing homes, and memory care centers, and all the different flavors of advanced senior living, as Meadow Brook.
So I think my real problem with age is that, indeed, our road will probably lead to Meadow Brook, and we have no desire to get there any time soon. So we need to get off of this age thing, away from any desire to sound old and complain about our age. Given the choice between Meadow Brook and babyhood, I’m going with babyhood.
I hereby reserve the right, however, to complain about my knees. My knees are old. And they suck.