Today I read an article “Reaching the Wired Boomer” by Dr. Mary S. Furlong, the author of Turning Silver into Gold! Dr. Furlong proposes that “the most profound media innovation of the baby boom era wasn’t television – it was the Internet.” This article has me reflecting on previous speeches, panel discussions and talks I have given on the way the Boomer generation will change forever our perceived notions of retirement. This generation (of which I am part) has never done anything quietly and is once again determined, vocal and actively turning upside down this “retirement” phase of life. While Boomer retirees may say farewell to a traditional career many will say hello to new opportunities, new careers, remote work, and creating a life of their own imaginings.
A perfect example of this trend is a friend of mine who recently retired from Government Service with the US Geological Survey and has just opened her very own business Vitalia MedSpa. She did her homework and she knew exactly the next journey in her life she wanted to take. Ironically, her business will thrive on serving Boomers seeking a younger fresher look to compliment the way they feel.But I digress; what I want to share today on my trip to the Powder Room are my thoughts of being a baby boomer. It is a frequent topic among my friends on how to cope with the challenges of supporting and caring for aging parents and young adult children. Neither our parents nor our children see life through the same lens we do.
Our parents come from a world, for the most part, of traditional male and female roles, fathers as breadwinners and mothers as homemakers. And the children of Boomers see a world of infinite possibilities, where fame and fortune are within easy reach and rise to the top of the food chain is virtually guaranteed. The line between traditional roles has been blurred if not all-together erased. Boomers have become the sticky stuff in the middle that sandwiches two generations. The amazing generation that fought and lived through World War II and the children of Sesame Street, the Internet and YouTube, IPods. I often feel that I am the peanut butter in the middle of this sandwich; sticky, gooey, sometimes crunchy, but most importantly bringing the two sides together.