Portland back yard

My ears physically hurt, my insides were strangely vibrating, and the former teen star was pretending to be a sex symbol on stage. Never have I felt as old as I did the night I found myself at a Joe Jonas concert.

While I’m not technically old enough to be his mother, appreciating his biceps or watching him grab his crotch just seemed icky. Even though his music was fine enough (generic pop with a heaping dose of swagger), I couldn’t wipe the “What the what?” look off my face for the life of me the entire performance. And each time someone tried to talk to me, all I could offer as an excellent impression of a deaf, grumpy old man: “What? What’s that you say? I can’t hear you over the dang music, sonny!”

Based on the photos floating around, everyone else in the world enjoyed the concert immensely. Me? I simply couldn’t get past how very old I felt and how relieved I was when the whole thing was over.

So you can probably understand why I was a teensy bit defensive when my mom asked me on Saturday: “Do you feel old yet?”

Excuse me? Do I feel OLD? Um, no. I am not old, thankyouverymuch. I am not even middle-aged. I don’t have gray hair (mostly), I don’t have [that many] wrinkles, and I keep mentions of how things were “back in my day” to a minimum. Yes, I may have enjoyed water aerobics quite a lot, and it’s possible I don’t miss an episode of NCIS. But I am young. I am cool. I know what the kids are up to these days.

I actually didn’t feel old when my mom made that comment. After the tea party, four of my 10-years-younger-than-me cousin’s friends joined us for a family dinner of takeout pizza on paper plates. (It’s only right that we balance out the fancy of the tea party with the casual of the pizza dinner, right?) They were loud and energetic and a whole lot of fun – and I enjoyed hanging out with them so much! I truly didn’t feel old.

I don’t feel old often, but every once in a while – like when I look down at myself on a Friday night and realize that I’m wrapped in a blanket, sitting on the couch, with two cats sitting on my lap – the feelings sneak up and hit me with the fact that I’m not exactly young anymore. No, wise and mature friends, I’m not old. But I’m not fresh out of school, optimistic to a fault, eager to prove myself young, either.

They say (yes, the proverbial “they”) that you’re only as young as you feel. Based on my insatiable appetite for YA fiction, teeny bopper movies (and ABC Family TV shows), and pizza served on paper plates – I guess I’m doing okay in the young department.

What makes YOU feel young . . . or old?

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