"Wow, you're old, Mom." Ever since I turned 50, a scant three years ago, my kids have uttered this out loud many, many times, as if I need convincing of the fact. I don't necessarily feel that I'm in my 50s, most of the time.
But when I hear people saying that 50 is the new 40, it makes me laugh out loud. (I'm too old to "LOL." in actuality, I'm more of a smirker.) Because only someone who is 50, or over, knows certain things. Those young 40-year-olds have no idea.
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You know you're 50 when...
The reason you wear a bikini is not because you've adapted a "flaunting it at 50" attitude, but because it's so much easier when you have to go to the bathroom. Which you have to do every 27 minutes or so. Also, it's really nice not to have fabric on your mid-section during a hot flash.
People start saying to you, unprompted, "You look terrific!" followed up by the dreaded and enthusiastic "Really!"
Your kids taunt you with mean insults like, "You know you're 50, right?"
You think, "Wow, really, 60 isn't all THAT old."
You describe someone in their 30s as a "kid."
You describe someone in their 40s as "young."
You describe someone in their 80s as really old. I mean, let's not get too carried away. We're 50, not 80.
You're older than the Canadian flag, which turned 50 in 2015.
You wake up in the night realizing that "Freedom 55" was referring to the AGE of 55, and you're almost there. Where is the fricking freedom, and how do we get it, and do we want it? Go back to sleep. After you go to the bathroom, of course.
You scoff at the ads for car insurance savings for people over 50, thinking, no one gets that excited over saving money on car insurance... or do they? Give me a minute.
You know, an Acorn Stairmaster chair would be easy to install NOW, instead of waiting until the last possible minute.
Do they still make Craftmatic beds? Where can you get one?
Someone starts talking about a five-year plan and you think "Five years? Will I still be around in five years?" and then you scoff at their youth. There is generally quite a bit of scoffing once you hit 50.
You say "It was in the '90s. It wasn't THAT long ago." The '90s were almost 30 years ago, baby. That's like your parents talking about the '30s when you were born in the '60s. Yes. Just think about that for a minute, why don't you?
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You take the elevator one floor down to go to the hotel gym to work out. Because to do otherwise would be silly, right?
You put ear buds in on a plane to watch a movie, but more importantly, to drown out the sounds of everyone younger than you who would drive you crazy in such an enclosed space. And everyone older, come to think of it. Assuming you can find someone older than you in economy, that is.
You're older than the Canadian flag, which turned 50 in 2015.
You have to scroll way, way, way down when you're entering your year of birth on an online form. Phew, they still have your year there.
You're the last tick box on a survey. By quite a bit.
You catch yourself saying, "What am I, 50?" And then realize you are.
Your comfortable shoe to stylish shoe ratio is 117:1.
Either way, it's not 60. Not yet.
Your automatic response to "That's a great dress" is "It's comfortable. I can eat my weight in chocolate in this number."
When you tell people your oldest child is 25, they nod, instead of exclaiming with great surprise. "What? YOU don't look old enough to have a 25-year-old!" I mean, that is the appropriate response, am I right?
You're really, really worried about falling. Not just on ice, like, at any time.
You can, and do, relate every new piece of technology back to Pong.
You know what Pong is, and you still think it was awesome and could totally make a comeback.
You read all of those magazines dedicated to the "mature, experienced" crowd "just for the stories." It's your Penthouse.
It takes two sets of corrective eyewear for you to be able to read the tiny directions on a bottle of your arthritis medicine. Or a brownie mix, depending.
Fifty is described as the youth of old age, or the old age of youth. Either way, it's not 60. Not yet. I'm working on that. And hoping my kids develop a better filter by them time they're 10 years older as well.
Kathy Buckworth is the award winning humour writer of six books. She is currently at work on "What Were You Thinking? One Mom's Attempt To Crack The Teen Code" You can find her books at Amazon.ca and wherever great books are sold.
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