It’s an interesting exercise to look back at a quarter century of anything – be it your own life, a trend or pattern in society, or in this case, the life of a product.
My son is a senior in high school this year – yet another cause for reflection on my part – and in his choice of classes to fill those last precious credits, opted for a course in sociology.
One of his first assignments was to examine the influences on his life by people and events – and conversely, his influence on people and events – starting with infancy. Again, this was something that gave me pause. You don’t always think about the two-way street of influence, how one act, or event, or in our case, product, can affect the course of things.
When The Reminder’s founder Carlo Buendo launched Senior PrimeTimes 25 years ago this month, his aim – according to the Editor’s Note in that first edition – was to create a publication that would reflect “all of the exciting challenges that come with a new stage of life” for readers 55 years of age and older.
We’ve tried to uphold that mantra over the years, tackling challenges to this “new stage of life” as they’ve appeared. I like to think we’ve had some success at this – as I’ve been told more than once readers look to Prime as somewhat of a “bible” to help them navigate this new life stage.
But working on this product for all these years has also had a profound effect on me, and how I view aging. I’ve seen the good – midlife entrepreneurs following their dreams to fulfilling careers and age-discrimination activists taking on society’s perceptions – and the bad – individuals who have had to overcome losing jobs, revisiting parenting roles as they take over raising grandchildren, and those coping with diagnoses of life-threatening illnesses and cognitive decline.
Nearly 22 years of writing and researching topics on aging have showed me that like any other stage in life aging presents a mixed bag – reasons for hope and causes for concern.
In some ways crossing that threshold to what we now call “elderhood”is not unlike graduating from high school – you’re moving on with expectations, but as my son put it recently, “not quite sure you’re ready for the real world.”
My thanks to all those I’ve interviewed for Prime over the past two decades. You’ve taught me many valuable lessons about this stage of life.
I hope we’ve offered the same kind of guidance to you, our readers, along the way.
Thanks for reading,