Disturbing Thought for the Day

Disturbing Thought for the Day

“Kids! Where are my tweezers? I have a mustache again!” “Oh, come on! I’m old enough for an AARP card but too young for discounts?! That’s not fair!” “Yes, I know these mood swings are killing you, honey. They’re killing me more.” Recalling some conversations of the past 24 hours, it occurs to me that in my mid-50s, I am in the puberty of old age.  

The grief of stages

The grief of stages

A few years ago my kids reached ages that I vividly remember being. Every song from the ‘70s serves to keep those memories fresh, and they translate, somehow, to my parenting. Those memories inform the way I talk to my kids, respond to them, make requests, challenge them, congratulate them. I remember the roller-coaster emotions, the raging hormones, the displaced anger, the confusion. I remember the “being with friends” moments from which emerged life memories. I feel like I’m a…

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Kids. I know I love ’em.

Kids. I know I love ’em.

I was wakened from my nap today by the boy coming home from school. He asked how I slept; I told him I slept well and had a good dream about Rome. He asked me to describe it. “I had dropped you guys off at a restaurant,” I said, “and was apparently driving into a village somewhere to pick something up. I’d crossed over a couple multi-lane highways and traveled through some roundabouts, and decided at a red light that…

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Don’t ask, don’t tell.

Don’t ask, don’t tell.

Speaking of hair color, I remember a visit to my hometown when I went to the local YMCA to watch my mom teach her Senior Aqua-Aerobics class. They were all in the pool as I greeted my mother. She was thrilled to show off her students – her “ladies” – to me, and me to them. “And this is my dance instructor,” my mom said at one point, introducing me to a woman in her eighties. “I don’t know how you…

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Forget this title. (I know I will.)

Forget this title. (I know I will.)

I teach two days a week at a local college, and had to miss a class a couple weeks into the semester due to a health issue. When I returned, a few students approached who had registered late. Since my attendance policy is based on the total number of classes available, they were concerned that they were starting the semester already behind. “Tell you what,” I said, benevolently. “When I calculate the attendance grade at the end of the semester, I’ll calculate yours separately, based on…

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Redefining “midlife crisis.” Or at least “midlife.”

Redefining “midlife crisis.” Or at least “midlife.”

So here’s what I think happened that resulted in such a disconnect between hitting 50 and actually feeling like I hit 50: I’m not there. Simply. Not. There. In my head, I’m somewhere in my 40s, I think. It went like this: I was born in 1962, did all the things kids did in the ‘60s – outside at dawn, back at dusk, walked two miles to school in the snow with Wonder bread bags in my boots, uphill both…

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A Boom With a View

A Boom With a View

1/26/16 I was talking to my college students recently about the upcoming election and the staggering fact that these words are currently found in the same sentence: Donald Trump is leading the GOP field. I try to keep my opinions to myself in class while encouraging lively debate, but then someone said, “Well, it kind of sucks that we’re left cleaning up the baby boomers’ mess.” “Whoa, Nellie,” I said. “Let’s not get blamey. I’m a boomer, and I specifically…

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