So relieved to know I have tomorrow off work, unlike the last month, as I worked at least part of every one of my usual days off. That I had the holidays just doesn't count. It's the number of days in a row at this sort of work. Thirty hours in three days just hurts.
A friend kept talking about an "older woman" he'd spent time with recently, who referred to herself as an "old woman." Repeatedly. I had to ask him to stop, since she is my age, and I am not old. Oh, my body feels old because of the damned pain issue, but I'm not old. Middle aged, sure, fine, not something I fixate on, but reasonable. And I've used the phrase when the young residents drop stuff on the floor that I have to pick up... actually, I then tell them I have an old back, and ask them to pick it up. Which is different. I may even say I feel old on particular days. Even "old lady" I've ironically used, clearly in jest. Gettin' there, but good gods, not there. Over 60, well, that probably begins the qualification. When I worked mostly with the elderly, that was still pretty young. Now, 80, 90, that's really getting up there.
As for not staying up late and partying, I never did. Midnight has been very, very late to me all my life. Strongly diurnal, me. Do better getting up early most days, can't keep late hours. Never pulled an allnighter, even in my 20s. Worked periods of night shifts, and about killed myself doing it, since I can't sleep more than a nap during the day. Never been a high energy person, short bursts only, get a job done then collapse. Nothing new, not a matter of age.
I know what old looks like. The oldest looking people smoke, do meth, don't walk. I know my experiences of the past six years or so have etched the time on my face. I look my age, and fair enough. Most days, I don't quite remember the number, and have to really think about it, am I 48, or going to be 48 shortly? Not that it matters. If my back didn't give me so much crap, I'd feel no different than when I was 30.