Aging, the way our grandparents did it, was downright hard. It led to us saying things like "getting old isn't for sissies." Here's why we think it's time for a change in that thinking -- five reasons why aging isn't as scary as it used to be:
1. You aren't alone.
Seventy-eight million U.S. children were born between 1946 and 1964 -- making boomers a significant force to be reckoned with based on group size alone. Now, they are turning 65 at the rate of about 10,000 a day. And whenever you have that many people doing something all at once, there is a takeover of sorts. Boomers ended a war, liberated sex and are already revolutionizing the aging process. (60 is the new 40 and all that.)
2. We have WebMD.
Say what you will about the accuracy of what you read online, at the end of the day, the Internet has made us better informed health-care consumers. That means that before we go in to see the doctor, we are equipped with questions. WebMd is the Bible of the boomer generation. We also are partial to the Mayo Clinic's website when it comes to ferreting out information about what ails us.
3. It is understood that retirement communities aren't for us.
Not now, maybe not ever. Maybe we shouldn't say never, but for the moment: Never. This generation wants to age in place in their homes. We want to live near family and old friends and stay active for as long as we can. The marketplace has responded accordingly with walk-in bathtubs and showers with seats. There are nanny cams for the elderly and granny shacks that be erected and placed in the backyard. The "hell no, we won't go" into a nursing home attitude even has some folks looking at states with assisted suicide laws.
4. Increasingly, there's a pill for just about everything!
Medicinal remedies have improved for the typical ailments associated with aging -- arthritis, high blood pressure, clogged arteries. But there are now drugs to improve lifestyle issues as well -- Viagra for erectile dysfunction, Latisse for thinning eyelashes.
5. Changes in auto technology mean we'll be driving safer, longer.
Adaptive headlights help drivers see better on dark, curved roads by pivoting the beam in the direction of travel. Parking assist and backup cameras aid in backing out of tight spots. Seat height and mirror adaptability improve visibility.
What would you add to this list? Let us know in comments.