Thursday, February 18, 2010

Paging Dr. Welby…

When I was a kid, I set benchmarks to let me know when I would be old. I knew I would be old in the year 2000, because that was such a long way off, right? I also knew I would be old when I got gray hair, because only old people have gray hair. If I had any children (I was hoping for 8 back then), when they all grew up, I would be old, because it would take a long time to raise 8 kids. If I ever had to wear glasses, specifically bifocals, I would be old. Only old people wore bifocals, that’s why they’re called granny glasses.

Well, here we are, dammit. The year 2000 came and went a decade ago. I’ve had gray hair for so long Miss Clairol and I are best friends. My three children are all grown up and gone (and it really didn’t seem to take long enough). And yesterday? I was told I need progressive lenses. Which is a fancy new word for bifocals. It’s official, I’m old.

Another benchmark was doctors. They were always nice, older men who looked like they had been doctors for so long, there wasn’t anything they couldn't diagnose. They put you at ease, because they had seen it all. They always had the best advice, since they had used the tried and true for years. One could feel comfortable in their knowledge. You could never be older than the doctor, right?



Could somebody please tell me when they started letting teenagers practice medicine?

The eye doctor yesterday had to have been all of 25 years old. She starts in with the “as we get older, we need to check regularly for glaucoma, blahblahblah” All I could focus on was we. She hasn’t even started yet!

A few weeks ago, I went for my annual woman exam. The nurse, all of 12, had me get on the scale and be measured. Her exact words, “Oh good! You haven’t started shrinking yet” Excuse me? Only old people shrink. Then I’m in the exam room, waiting for the hoo-ha doctor to come in. When she does, it looks like she got her braces off last week! She starts asking me about hot flashes (yes!) and mood swings (duh, have you ever met a hot flash? That’s enough to swing even Richard Simmons's mood) and general old people aches and pains. She suggests calcium supplements because older women lose calcium. Hello?? Not old! Even if I did use to babysit you.

Please, where are all the old doctors? The ones with the wizened faces and had all the answers? Did they all retire in the same year, leaving the practice of medicine to boy scouts and candy stripers? In the whole of the doctors office, the only person who looked over the age of 30 was me.

The good news? Even though I’m a decade older than old, color washed redhead, with grown children, wearing granny glasses…I haven’t started to shrink.


  1. You’re just now getting bifocals? You’re not old.

    Actually, the medical profession is like Harry Potter. There is always a grand old wizard behind the scenes whipping up potions.

  2. I totally hear you. Now I look at doctors and try to figure out if they could have been my students back when I was teaching high school.

    And I shudder to think what would happen if I stopped dyeing my hair. My roots are now more gray than brown. Waaaaaah!

  3. Granny glasses? Yup, you're old.

    Just kidding! I figured all of your comments would be telling you that you are only as young as you feel, blah, blah, blah. I had to be a little different.

    I just know I'm getting old too! When I read People magazine or something making comments about some celebrity and I wonder who the heck are they talking about, I realize I'm old.

    Besides, no matter how old I get, you'll always be older than me! :) Love you!

  4. The big one for me is watching college football. Oh my goodness, those kids are BABIES! How can they let them out on the field without WAY more padding!

    And then I realize I used to be one of them.

  5. I just said that the other day!! "The doctors are older than me now!"

    I was at one of my local favorite restaurants recently and I was requesting a certain waiter, but I couldn't remember his name. The hostess listened to me and said, "The older gentleman?" And I was all, "Noooo."

    And then all of a sudden it hit me and I said, "Wait, he's probably about 30."

    And this hostess who was 5, I think, said, "Right, the older gentleman."

    Dear Me. I don't know how this happened!

  6. I started getting gray hairs when I was 20, so I've been old for a looooong time. I fixed the whole glasses thing with laser surgery, but I'm pretty sure it's wearing off.

    For me, it's the idea that I could physically be a Grandma right now that is completely demoralizing.

  7. Wouldn't mind a little horizontal shrinkage!

    I recruit doctors for a living and trust me they are as young as they look.

  8. Yeah, I got the progressive lenses last year :(

    The Sweethearts, young DR. is so handsome I ask to go to his office with him just to look at the young good looking Doctor and when he smiles, oh my gosh, what a smile, it's really yummy. I reached old last year and it sucks.

  9. I live in a world of progressive glasses and bi-focal contacts, and I spun around for a week or so getting used to them. Have the bonus readers to wear on top too! Lovely!

  10. Ah, the turning of another page. It's always interesting to watch people go through that stage in their life because we remember when we did. Younger people who haven't, think it's funny until WHAM, "OMG it's happening to ME!" And it always does. After a while, you get used to it - until the next page turns.

  11. Just wait until your hoo-hah doctor tells you that you no longer need an annual exam. You are now so old that every three years is often enough. How do I know this, you ask? I am older than dirt.


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