Voices in Our Heads: Mother’s Day Memories

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April 22, 2009 in 

I am heavily invested in politics and even though election season is over politics is never ”over.” After a recent major fundraiser – which got me home very late – after a longer week of late nights – my body rebelled.

When I awoke, still tired, I heard my mother’s voice “You know – you’re not 20 anymore.”

There are other of her sayings that sometimes appear but “not 20 anymore” is the one that comes back with some regularity – especially when I am doing “things” that we ancient elders are not “supposed” to be doing.

My mom started on that mantra when I was in my 40’s and began playing competitive softball, touch football and squash. All of these come with the possibility of injuries and I was not immune: broken finger, broken ankle, sore quads, and being hit by line drives!

Ouch – but I did not stop as my own mantra is “play when hurt.” I finished a softball double header with a broken finger and ended that season only after the orthopod said further injury could result in serious permanent impairment.

I would tell my mother of my latest games – injuries or not – and she would repeat her mantra. It became a regular laughing point of all our conversations and she admitted she wished she still could do what I was doing! This continued until she died at 95 and I was in my early 60’s – still doing those sports and telling her about them.

So when I had my exhausting week – her words rang in my head and I wondered if she was somewhere shaking her head proudly saying aloud to all who listen “that daughter of mine” – then to me “You know – you’re not 20 anymore.”

Native of NYC who moved a lot, got several degrees, and has been a lifelong writer and reader... I am interested in many things - and I write [and teach] about them - especially the human lifespan and healthy aging

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