This is a woman’s story. This is my story. I’m a first generation American, a baby boomer, born in New York City, right smack in the middle of that boom, in 1954.
I was born into the generation that created the counterculture. Like a million other girls, I screamed in my parents living room in ecstasy when I saw the Beatles sing “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” on the Ed Sullivan show in 1964. I writhed in sartorial splendor watching The Rolling Stones on that same TV show, unaware that they were forced to censor their lyrics from “Let’s Spend the Night Together” to “Lets Spend Some Tome Together”. I was that skinny girl wearing a flowered scarf for a halter blouse, sitting starstruck in the fifth row, my mouth agape with incredulity to the sight and sound of Jimi Hendrix at the Filmore East in 1969, grinding up against his stat, picking it with his teeth. I never made it to Woodstock. A year later, I listened to my vinyl record of Joni Mitchell spinning on my portable record player, tears streaming down my face…
I came upon a child of God
He was walking along the road
And I asked him, where are you going
And this he told me
I’m going on down to Yasgur’s farm
I’m going to join in a rock ‘n’ roll band
I’m going to camp out on the land
I’m going to try an’ get my soul free
We are stardust
We are golden
And we’ve got to get ourselves
Back to the garden
Let’s spend some time together. Let’s Spend the Night Together.
I have a story to tell you and time is of the essence. I’m an American baby boomer, and I have been diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease.