Friday, February 17, 2012

the age of egg salad and tiger balm

This is a little tale on getting older. Sure you could say technically we are all getting older, even my tiny toddler is getting older. But on the heels of my birthday and the sprinting line of a big life number looming I give a minute to ponder all the life changes that can happen in a life. Sometimes my life events seem to come in waves; last year was no exception. At this particular birthday I am starting to feel the title ‘middle age’ take hold. Now really, you could argue how in the world could last year you still feel 25 even though you were (cough) 36? And when reasonably did you, Sierra, think that middle age started? Well to be honest I never really thought about it. Maybe it was when I turned 37 and suddenly actually felt like I was 37. So there might be the real argument. You are not middle age, until you think/feel you are or at least start thinking about it.

There are some hilarious things about being middle age, and I am not the only one who thinks so.  

I know there is some or many comedians out there who have a barrage of ‘you know you are getting old when.....’ jokes.

Here is what I have compiled from other older and wiser writers out there on the www
You know you are middle aged when...
  • you find yourself in a garden centre and actually recognise the names of some plants. (ummm is that an epiphyte over there? oh yes certainly)
  • you keep more food than beer in the fridge. (excluding the dude of the house)
  • older relatives feel comfortable telling sex jokes around you.
  • comfort triumphs over style in the fashion stakes.
  • all you want is a quiet night in.
  • you choose Fairtrade coffee and organic muesli over pop-tarts and chocolate milk. (sometimes)
  • you make sure you're well rested before attending a concert.
  • you eat olives from the local farmer's market.
  • rather than throwing away old shoes, you keep them in case they come in handy for the garden.
  • when at a concert, you tut and sigh because the girl in front has wrapped her backside around her boyfriend's shoulders and you can't see the stage without standing up. And you really don't want to have to stand up.
  • you feed your dog natural, holistic dog food instead of leftovers after a visit to McDonald's.
So in the same vein, some I have added, but not as entertaining.
You know you are middle aged when...
  • you have been to more funerals than weddings in a year.
  • you start to appreciate egg salad sandwiches (thanks mse).
  • you look forward to the hot water bottle at the end of the day.
  • you carry tiger balm under your wing.
  • you start to critically think you are not getting paid enough for what you do.
  • you would dance anywhere any time and don’t care one bit (is this just me?).
  • you feel authority not just with your words, but your whole being and realize this is the more sophisticated-teen-thought version with actual facts and gusto behind it; not just a thought with a lot of hot air.
  • you realize the people, especially other mamas and women are all super heroines with their own special powers and they feed your own superheroine-ness too.
  • you can ponder the existence and connection between every living thing and can feel it in your bones wanting your heart to bust from your chest.
  • you could care less about any imperfections about your body (or you have so many that it would be impossible to care about all of them).
  • you think of researching life insurance and examine your 401k plan with a finer toothed comb
  • things start to make sense and are senseless at the same time
My additions definitely feel more sobering. I guess I have many more questions than answers to this.
Again I am new to this whole middle age thing. Is middle age is earlier for people who have kids? Does the number of kids contribute to the middle age feeling? Does it matter how old you are when you have kids?
Is there an equation to all of this?
Can someone pour cold water on me and wake me from this dream?
Do people have middle life views that are sunshine and rainbows?  
Someone give me more intoxicating mid-life antics please.


  1. i love this post, Sierra. your additions to the list are quite poetic and lovely. i hardly ever feel like i'm 36, but occasionally I'll catch sight of the crows feet around my eyes and think, "when did that happen?". it helps to be married to someone who also thinks he's still a kid at 40.

  2. Aging is timeless. I truly feel everyone has a kid buried inside of us, but sometimes it gets squashed by roles we have to play as adults. It's nice to know that I am not the only one married to a man-child. (I say that in the most flattering way)