After months of fretting about getting older, President George W Bush turned 60 on Thursday.
Bush celebrated his birthday with friends on Tuesday at a White House party on Independence Day and there were not supposed to be any festivities today.
Still, the occasion was expected to be noted in a long day of meetings and public appearances, including a news conference with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
In speech after speech, Bush has referred to himself as the "old president - getting older by the minute, by the way"; as one of "the gray-haired folks"; as "getting older"; and as just flat-out "old."
"For many boomers, turning 60 is a fairly significant shock," said Karl Pillemer, a professor of human development at Cornell University. "The generation that believed it would be young forever, clearly will not. ... The boomers are having a hard time with the existential reality of life not being one open-ended opportunity after another."
Dr J Edward Hill, the immediate past president of the American Medical Association and a family physician, has seen many patients display Bush's chatty angst. But he said the president's joshing around is one of the healthiest approaches.
"When you worry about something, you talk about it," he said.