I starting to wonder when the big switch happened. When did the rest of the world become younger than I am?
I know that in reality only 1/3 of the world is younger. Actually, it's probably less than that when you consider the largest pecentage of the US' population is over age 65. But it's a depressing feeling to wake up one day and realize that you're getting old. I know, 30 is NOT old. But I'm allowed to feel a little creaky every so often, right?
This all started when I took Bailey to the vet on Friday. We haven't been to the vet since we moved back to Colorado, so I hadn't met the new doctor/owner. Our old vets sold the practice to a new set of partners that I've heard good things about. I stumble into the office with a manic dog on one arm pulling on the leash to get to the other animals in the waiting room. In the other arm I carry the carseat filled with a very antsy and newly teething baby. Three people in the first five minutes of the visit said,
"Boy, you have your hands full."
This comment in and of itself can make you feel like you're sprouting grey hairs on the spot. What these people are really saying is,
"Wow. I'm glad that's not me." or "I'm so glad that my kids are 18 and 22 and that I lived through that phase of life already."
I get into the exam room where I'm met by the two vet techs who take the initial set of vital information. They appear to be 18 and 20 respectively. This doesn't bother me because all vet techs seem to be young college-aged kids who are working their way through vet school. Then the vet/owner comes in the room. I keep stressing "owner" because this person who looked no older than the teenage bagboy at the grocery store has not only completed vet school, but is part owner in his own practice. He starts giving me medical advice on middle-aged dog arthritis, etc. And the whole time all I can think is,
"Are you serious? How can you be old enough to give my dog advice on middle-age aging?"
If we do the math in dog-years, Baily is probably twice the good Doctor's age.
Then I get pulled over for speeding. You know you're getting old when you get pulled over for going 43 in a 35 mph zone. Whatever happened to the wild days of going 90 in a 65 mph zone? More grey hairs appearing as the police officer saunters up to my window. He looked to be all of 18 or 19.
"Are you serious? Are you even old enough to have a license, let alone wield a radar gun -- and a real gun, for that matter -- and pull me over?"
This just keeps happening to me. I feel like I'm trapped in Groundhog Day. Instead of waking up on the same day everyday, I'm trapped in some alternate universe where people just keep getting younger. I am well aware of the fact that there is a wicked reciprocal nature to the world. The older that I continue to get, the younger the rest of the world seems to be. I guess I'm having a hard time swallowing these realizations because I've always felt so young.
It pays to live in your mind (where you've never been older than anyone) than to face the realities of aging. For now I suppose I will stock up on Oil of Olay wrinkle prevention and a box of hair color. And I will bite my lip as Susie the 16-year old approves my loan application or sells me my next car.