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Will you still need me, will you still feed me?

07 March 2011

2010 sure started well - not! As if Haiti wasn't already one of the most awful places to live in the world. And then they get the earthquake the UN describes as the worst disaster it has ever dealt with: a predicted 100,000 to 200,000 people killed, and up to 3 million still cut off from outside rescue efforts.

Yes of course, like you, I've sent in my donations, and am barracking like mad for people to be rescued - for water, for food, for shelter.

But really honestly and trully I could have told you - if you'd asked - that 2010 was going to be a dud year.

Why?

Cause I'm going to be 64 and, baby boomer that I am, that makes 2010 a crunch year.

Will you still need me, will you still feed me - with the latter not taken literally but meaning nurture of all kinds. And with the questions addressed not just to my one and only, but to the big world out there. Am I still relevant? Useful? What next?

Paul McCartney wrote the tune of \"When I'm 64\" as a teenager and recorded it at 24. He hit the magic number himself four years ago. Ringo Starr is two years older - that means the big 70 for him in 2010. The other two Beatles never made it to 60.

There is still something appealing about the vision of retirement in the song: enduring love, bottle of wine, small chores, knitting, seaside holidays and grandchildren. I'm into all of these except for the actual retirement part.

I read that \"the new 64 is more like 84\". Struth! Now I'm expected to keep goin full blast for another 20 years.

Life expectancy rates were on the improve for Haitians and had crept over 60 in 2009. Then the earthquake hit. Sixty-four looks great to me now.

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1 comments

  • Judy West

    Judy West 8 years ago

    A year since you wrote this Renata, but I'm a new Ruby. I'd love to know if you found the answers to the question but I doubt there are answers. I work full-time - around 60 hours a week - as the owner of two businesses, have a retired husband who plays golf 3 days a week, an adult family living locally and a couple of grandkids. I truly enjoy my work but admit to being a workaholic. Given a choice I would do the golf bit and babysit the grandchildren more often but I am a product of my generation. Driven.I remember the struggle of trying to get ahead in my career, juggle the sports days, sick days & 14 weeks a year school holiday when I only had 4 weeks annual leave.I admire those women who have fought so hard to replace 'sick leave' with 'personal leave', to claim maternity leave as a legitimate right for all families and are still battling with sex discrimination in the workplace. However I am concerned that some of these advances come at a price, just as some of the choices of the women of my generation came at a price. For me it was denying my children a holiday at Christmas, packing them off to relatives each morning for 6 weeks, missing their school concert, arriving at sports day when their race had been run.I would really like to know the price younger women are paying for the 'privilege' of being a member of the workforce in Australia today.