Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Gabriella is old
Gabriella just got a letter from Social Security outlining everything she needs to know about retirement and how much money will NOT be available to her by that time. Apparently, by 2041, the Social Security Trust Fund will be exhausted. But even more important than how much money we will not have in a few short years is the fact that my dear, sweet beloved Gabriella is as old as dirt. A letter from Social Security? Really?!? It won’t be long until AARP is sending her discount subscription packages for their magazine. I wonder how much it would cost to install a ramp outside our door. I’m not ready to change bedpans!
It’s not that I mind that Gabriella is ancient. She has always been older than I, and I suspect that she will always be. But if she’s been around since year dot, than that means that I’m no spring chicken either, and THAT is a bummer. Once upon a time, I was the youngest in each of our social clusters-always receiving that metaphoric pat on the head with one simple smile. No longer. Now I’m the one who sighs when we discuss age, and I try not to look as if I’m saying “ahh, youth” with my eyes.
It’s not Social Security’s fault. I blame our high school aged babysitter for ripping the rug out from under me. She left me without words and without breath for a traumatic moment when we were discussing Asher.
Ellen: “I noticed that Asher talks about himself often in the 3rd person.”
Me: “Yes. We don’t make a big deal about it because we figure he’ll grow out of it soon enough. For now, it’s kind of cute. We refer to him as our little Bob Dole. You know who that is, right?”
Ellent: “Yes, I think so. I believe we studied him in History class.”
Me in my own dark mind: “Get out!”
A completely separate occasion
Ellen: “I forget what Levi’s middle name is.”
Me: “It’s Giacomo which is the Italian form of Jacob. Works for both his Italian and his Jewish mothers. And, Giacomo is also Sting’s son’s name.”
Me: “Sting?!? The singer? The Police….no? How about David Bowie, do you know him?”
Ellen: “I think I heard him on my Dad’s ipod.”
Me in my own dark mind: “You’re not welcome here anymore, devil’s spawn.”
For the most part, I’m protected. This town is filled with older parents of young children. That’s what I am-an older parent. Hey, it’s not our fault! We had things to do. Places to go. Biology to manipulate. I know a fair number of older parents who grew up on the same television shows and started voting around the same time as I did. They help me feel like I didn’t waste my child-bearing years away. Who cares, right? Right. I’ve got my Pinot at my side and my ol’ lady lover trying to fix my computer. Doh! Just ran out of Pinot. Must refill before the happy buzz fades and I start staring at my age spots.
Is it wrong to wish that my boys sire children before they’re 21 so that I can enjoy grandparenthood?