If You Ask Me My Age, I Will Lie To You... Maybe.

I am 12 years old. I am really tall, too tall for my age. The ride operators at Disneyland and Boardwalks and Amusement Parks and of ski lifts don't believe my mom when she tells them I am 12 years old. They think I am 16, they want her to pay for the price of a ticket of the age they think I should be. It is the first time I learn that I am not the age people think I should be. It is the first time that I learn that my age costs money.

I am 17 years old. I am graduating high school too early. I am graduating high school one year before I am supposed to graduate high school. I earn a diploma and awards in my studies and for my grades, but my age prevents me from knowing that they mean that I am smart. I start University at 17 and am confused about why I am too young to be there.

I am 18 years old in Europe by myself. I leave France to go to Germany on the train. I learn French and some German and make friends and responsibly drink beer with lemonade, champagne, sekt and schnapps while I dance and go out with my friends. I roam the streets, walk through fields of corn and grape vines to visit Maja's house where we talk and I learn that you can shave your legs with hair conditioner and it won't give you razor burn. I go skinny dipping in the lake. I come of age. I return to the US and am too young to be responsible because I am not yet 21. I do not feel safe anymore.

I am 20 years old and I "sneak" in to clubs to dance, and I am only carded once. I don't drink a drop of alcohol at the bars. I go back to Europe. When I come back to the US, I go to the dance clubs and they are mad because I was not the right age when I was there last.

I am 25-49 years old and I am a musician. I am too young to be a musician because I am not old enough to be a musician. I am too old to be a musician because I am not young enough to be a musician. I get bullied, groped, kicked off pianos and told I will never make it alone. I am the only female composer that I know. I am the only female singer that plays the piano that I know. I do not write or play notes right, I sing with too much vibrato and am too old to be single. Men pretend they are dating me without my knowledge. When I figure it out, I tell nobody because I know I am not the right age to be taken seriously.

I am 50-54 years old. I look too young to be the age that I am. I tell people that I am 50 and they tell me I am lying because I don't even look 40. I realize that my age is only what other people allow it to be. I cannot make sense of that lie because it leaves no room for my identity in it. I have written 10,000 worlds in music and choreographed the secret to the moon and back. I do not own my age. I pay for it now instead of my Mom.

I am 55-62 years old. I do not dye my hair. I go to the supermarket and people start to call me ma'am when they speak with me. They don't look me in the eye anymore. They fill my grocery bags too full so that they are too heavy for me to carry, but they don't help me to my car because I am not old enough yet to need it.

I am 63 years old. I am invisible. People run into me on sidewalks and expect me to retire in 3-4 years. I am in the best shape of my life and writing my third symphony. The choreography I do is mature and edgy. I don't give a fuck. My age has been a lie for 51 years. I tell people I am 42 so that they will take my work seriously. They do.

I am 3,000,000 years old. I am finally the right age. I am the age of dust.

#age #female #women #men #social #music #socialpressure #aging #youth

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