The perception of time is relative. Children view time in the context of a calendar that is divided into days and subdivided into hourly segments for study, play, meals and sleep.
Adults have complicated schedules that consist of appointments and long- term goals. Time to work and time to do everything else.
When we were kids, time seemed to pass so slowly. We counted the interminably long hours and days of school work between the much-awaited weekends. We looked forward to the summer vacations that seemed to be over as soon as they began.
Fun time was always a blur of images. In contrast, work time was deliberate and focused.
As we grew up and graduated from school, we became preoccupied with jobs, careers, and families. All of a sudden, there is never enough time to do everything. It is an endless race against the clock to meet deadlines.
The passing of time is part of the growing (and the aging process). A few fortunate individuals maintain a youthful attitude and manage to preserve their looks. Others welcome age with grace and look good despite the laugh lines and crow’s feet. Character lines, they say. Some people are in denial and reject any visible signs of ageing.
In the spirit of the lunar New Year, let us note some of the unmistakable signs of age. We assure the reader that, with a dose of humor, one does not get older but will definitely feel better.
You know you’re getting older when:
- You peer at the small print of the newspaper.
- Younger people address you with the respectful "po." Little kids ask you to bless them. People give you their seats in a bus or help you cross the street.
- You keep reminiscing about the "good old days." You enjoy living with your memories instead of planning for the future.
- You enjoy revival hits and bands from the 1950s, ’60s and wear fashions from that era.
- You get confused with the names of nephews, nieces, and grandkids.
- You sleep late and wake up very early (even before the cock crows).
- You cannot remember what you were about to say.
- You read the obit pages and you know people who passed away. You attend more wakes and funerals than baby showers, baptisms, and children’s parties.
- Your grandchild graduates from high school and college. You have a great grandchild.
- You believe all the tall tales and incredible sob stories of young damsels (or DIs) in distress.
- You need a hearing aid, walking stick, nurse.
- You try to recapture your lost youth through much younger partners.
- You pant after climbing a few steps or after dancing for five minutes.
- You become intolerant of many little things...noise, loud music, teenagers.
- You attend ruby and golden jubilee reunions.
- You are a wedding sponsor rather than baptismal godparent.
- You start dyeing your hair to cover the silver and gray strands.
- You switch from tennis to golf. You give up scuba diving.
- You start monitoring your blood pressure, sugar and cholesterol levels and compare these numbers with friends. You start having nips, tucks, and Botox shots.
- You give up the fun and wicked things and start acting conventional and mellow. No more adventures. Just safe activities.
- You start taking the blue diamond-shaped pill and brag about its effects.
- You can whistle and brush your teeth at the same time.
- You fall asleep at a party, at the dining table, or in front of the TV and it is not yet midnight.
- You start smelling like a camphor chest, Old Spice and pomade.
- You give up being a free spirit in favor of a sedate, predictable life. You are more conscious about what you wear, what you eat, and where you go.
- You start your stories with "When I was young.... When I was your age.... During my time...."
Age is really a state of mind. What matters is that the individual (of any age group) enjoys life with a positive vibrant attitude and a healthy lifestyle.