On every third occasion when I get into a conversation about how all generations might newly “envision the promise of longevity”, invariably the subject swings to retirement, with the “can’t hardly wait” chant. And then on the fourth occasion it’s our “third age” or our “encore years”, or as in Canada our “Zoomer” years. Not to carp on about the semantics, no matter how you mash it up – we all age and die. That’s forever normal, yes?
Our aging process is the continuum – our life course. We all live it in different ways and leave it and at different times. Some way too early and some gracefully (or painfully) for up to a 100 years or more. The promise of our longevity in a general context, tends to be of a greater timeframe since history began to record. That’s normal now, right?.
In our recent times we’re inclined to chunk and mark our lives in segments like a relay race, with flags flapping us on from adolescence to an “elder-escence”. What is that part of our life course supposed to look like? What are we hardly waiting for? This notion of planning for a retirement or some third age is just one part of a series of aging transitions. What’s after that? Maybe it’s some “nth degree dimension” that can wave on the final segment of that “elder-escence”.
Our life’s journey is our career, a “swiftly moving course, like the sun and the stars across the heavens”. What’s tomorrow’s normal?