As baby boomer women, we’re reveling in our prime years—our trademark spirit and legendary rebellious attitude intact. We’re far from relegating ourselves to the rocking chair. Heck no! We’re still rockin’ like it’s 1999!
Nevertheless, every once in a while, we experience an event that truly shakes us to our core. I had one a while back and it was a doozey.
It happened while I was already somewhat stressed, sitting in the dentist’s chair getting my teeth cleaned. Upon first glance at my pearly whites, the hygienist (who was no spring chicken herself) mentioned how gratified she was to see an elderly woman who still had all of her teeth. Now mind you, I was sitting in that blasted chair, I had my mouth wide open, and she was looking intently at MY full set of teeth. I realized, to my growing shock, that there might be an infinitesimal possibility she could be referring to ME as “elderly!”
My emotions ran the gamut from stunned disbelief to sheer horror. At any rate, had she not been holding the scraping tool at the time, I might have been tempted to bite one of her probing fingers and clamp down hard. That offending hygienist would have quickly learned to restrict her comments to wondering, “Where the yellow went” and abstain from any further references to my incisors as “elderly.” Regrettably, I only smiled and swallowed hard. But next time anyone who dares utter that terrible word in my direction will undoubtedly suffer the consequences.
So a word of caution to those of you who interact with us boomers: we don’t mind “middle-aged” and will even tolerate “seniors.” But if you try calling us “elderly,” watch out. They don’t call this the feisty side of fifty for nothing!