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No Madrecita

By May 31, 2024June 20th, 2024No Comments

My sister Adriana, who lives in Guadalajara, took her car to be repaired at the dealership. There they told her that she would need to leave the car for a couple of days so she suddenly was car-less. She was close to home so she decided to take the city bus.  As soon as she got on the bus, she realized it had been decades since she had taken public transportation!

Adriana didn’t know that you can no longer give the money to the bus driver, now you insert your money into a device. Needless to say she was very confused and found herself fumbling with the coins, the machine, and since everyone was waiting for her, this made her even clumsier! While noticing her confusion, the bus driver still had to get going so he pulled out back on the road, all the while telling my sister, “No se caiga madrecita! Don’t fall sweet old lady!”  My sister looked around her thinking he was talking to someone else, because she does NOT consider herself a “madrecita.”  But the driver was definitely talking to her! In Spanish, “madrecita” is a term of endearment used on little old ladies, grannys.  It’s a sweet way to talk to a “little old lady” but no woman in her sixties, nowadays, wants to be called a “madrecita” no matter how kind it’s supposed to sound!

My sister called me as soon as she got home, totally flabbergasted that she fell into that category!  She doesn’t feel like a “madrecita!” She feels energetic, she knows she looks great, and though she IS a grandma, she still feels like she’s in her forties! She told me she vacillated between pouting and giggling at the irony that she had become a “madrecita.” When she told me the story we both laughed so hard but also cried that age has caught up to us!

We like to say that age is only in your mind. I WISH this were true.  The reality is that we DO age.  No matter who you are, how wealthy you are, how smart you are, how creative you are, how sexy you are, you will age!  Gravity will take its toll, things start falling, and I’m not just referring to your hair… he he he.

My good friend, who is a few years older than me, commented that people treat you differently as you get older. I didn’t used to believe her but to my surprise and my disillusionment, it’s true. I’m not evening referring to ageism, people don’t purposely overlook you, you just stop being in their realm of perception.  It’s strange, and it does happen.  Have you experienced this?

You get old overnight by the way. One day you go to sleep and when you wake up you are OLD. Younger people can be condescending, they talk to you slowly and loudly, and they treat you like you might not understand certain things (And frankly, when it comes to technology or social media, it’s better for me if I pretend to understand nothing, less work for me)!

I do sometimes feel like screaming at the younger people: EXCUSE ME???!!  HELLO!! YOU young person, you might be young but I have been around the block several times before you were even born, I have paid my dues on this planet!  In Spanish there’s an expression:  “Como te ves me vi, y como me ves, te veras.”  Translated in English, “The way you look, I used to look as well, and the way you see me, you will look too.”

There’s a lack of reverence for older people in this country.  So sorry, I have to say it.  There used to be more respect, more appreciation, more value placed on elders.  It feels like a lost concept.  Does saying that make me sound old?  So be it!  I may be older, but I’m no “madrecita,” I work, I travel, I’m independent, I challenge myself, I learn new things, and I am still fully connected to my body, my desires, and so on 😉

I know you are too.  And I hope to feel this way into my nineties… age isn’t what it used to be.  We ain’t no grannies or grampies!

Maybe we can start a new trend: embrace the age, stomp down the idea that as you get older you become invisible! Do we need to treat the younger people like they have no clue, that one day they’ll be our age too?  We don’t need to do that, they will figure it out!

In the meantime, enjoy your age, because the opposite of being old, is being dead.  Ooooooooh!