aging and ageism…

detail, Anti-Aging

Today while hand-stitching down facings on new work I decided to listen to some TED talks I had saved. What a revelation! Ok, so I am late to the party. Being a visually oriented person I have had life-long trouble figuring out the best way to assimilate information. It was not college, it is not books, it is not any form of lengthy written word. It is occasionally Kindle and occasionally not! It is basically by hearing or doing. So today I listened to five TED talks and came away with an entirely new appreciation for tidbits of information.

One such talk was about putting an end to ageism. Essentially the idea is ageism is the last frontier of social issues. We’ve acquired voting rights, women’s rights, civil rights, LGBTQ rights, etc. Now is the time to end ageism.

Every one of us, if we are so blessed will get OLD. Because I have lost three friends to cancer, at ages 56, 59 and 67, I NEVER complain about getting older. It is a privilege not granted to all. There are tremendous advantages to aging, not the least of which is no longer giving a shit about stuff that made us frantic with worry early on. Yet in this culture OLD is not revered but instead seen as some sort of cast-aside wizen, useless creature.

It was so good for me to listen to this TED talk, and to be reminded that so much of my own programming contributes to ageism. It is as if sometimes I don’t expect as much from myself, because well, I am getting OLDer. And yet I gave away the rocker after the baby was grown. I am actively making art, actively exercising, actively traveling, actively interacting with friends and actively try to learn and understand. I am an active almost 70 year old with some physical challenges. My goal is to acknowledge those which are real and those which are old school propaganda about aging. It is time to throw out that old, sagging stereotypical thinking.

OLD PEOPLE ROCK…as in caveman!

 

6 Responses to “aging and ageism…”

  1. Martha Ginn says:

    Thanks for the link on the TED talks–good reminders that we’re getting better, not just older, and it’s a matter of choice. I have trouble realizing I am 81 and am often surprised at helpfulness or assistance offered. Then it dawns on me that I have gray hair and wrinkles and some courteous soul remembers his manners and upbringing. I said in a group of people recently, “wonder when I am supposed to start acting old?” and my daughter answered, “well, I hope you’ll tell me first!”

    • Carol says:

      Martha, helplessness is definitely old school, isn’t it?! I am always surprised how many young people will cut in front or cut me off entirely. When someone opens the door it is truly a fall-over moment! And yet I have learned there are some who enjoy helping, like the wheelchair assistance in airports. That was a bitter pill, until I learned it brightens their day to help me! So I wouldn’t want to disappoint!

  2. I’m going to check out that link Carol, though I already feel that I’ve gotten the meat of the issue here. Thanks for your clear thinking — again!

  3. Cindy Kelleher says:

    THANK YOU!!!! Old people DO rock! Aging isn’t for sissies. As I just turned 71 two days ago, I was happy to read this and think about all the wrinkles and some aches and pains I have earned over the years. I am grateful to have them! I see them, sometimes feel them, but am always amazed when I realize I’m not 30 anymore. Mike listens to TED all the time, I never have but think I will tune in.. Thanks for an interesting post.

    • Carol says:

      LOL, Cindy I often think that my aches and pains remind me I am alive! And who would want to be 30 again, not me! Aging ain’t for sissies…

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