Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The Ol' Gray Mare... She Ain't What She Used To Be

I'm sending you a personal invitation to my pity party today. Come on and humor me. It'll be fun. For all you 20-somethings, it may be more FUNNY than fun... but just you wait. Your days are numbered sista!!
What exactly is this cruel joke Mother Nature decides to play on us when we hit our thirties? Seriously, somebody should write a book and warn the rest of the world! It probably wouldn't be well received... kinda like when a mother tries to explain (warn) another poor, unsuspecting soul what's in store for her as far as pregnancy and child rearing are concerned. I guess we think that we'll be different or maybe it's because we are so wrapped up in the moment that we can't see farther than the end of our own nose to think life could be any different than it is now. Ah, youth. It really is wasted on the young. :)
I guess everybody expects to get crow's feet at some point. After my first gray hair (at about age 32) is when I noticed the little lines around my eyes starting to grow in prominence. I told myself they were laugh lines, although now I don't think they are so funny. Now my only reservation about getting Lasik eye surgery is that I'm convinced my glasses camouflage any crepiness going on. Yeah, I know...old AND delusional!
But speaking of crepiness... nobody tells you that the look of wrinkled tissue paper will eventually continue all the way down to your chest! You know, the cleavage ain't worth showing if it looks like you need to take an iron to it! I'm beginning to feel like my skin is like a balloon that has been blown up one to many times... all that tautness and firmness of my youth is beginning to fade right before my eyes. Or at least that the way it appears. I can't see a THING without my glasses.
And since the old metabolism starts to drag somewhere in our twenties, a healthy dose of exercise would seem to be a logical resort, right? Well, it would until you realize that moves that seemed so effortless when you were younger (dancing, kickboxing, etc) now are so...difficult. It's like your brain is sending the message but the body is not cooperating... or at the least it feels like it's on delay. And then there is the recuperation from said exercise. What used to take a day now requires a weekend. That goes for a little overindulgence as well. Cough. If you know what I mean.
I remember three years ago when Chuck and I were looking for a house. We came upon a new construction that had a nice deck on the back. It was after hours, so we just decided to peek in the windows and look around. The steps to the deck had not been built, but we just hoisted each other up for a look-see. As we were leaving, Chuck hopped down from the deck, and I followed. I cannot describe the jarring sensation that swept through my entire body. There was no bounce...no spring. Just the sensation that every joint in my body was going to crack. I let out an "UGGHH!" We exchanged some comments about how we used to jump out of trees and off swing sets and how now we could barely make it off a three foot deck. Laughing at how our bodies had failed us, we got back in our car and vowed to never do that again.
I don't know what bothers me more: the things we can't see about our bodies as we age or the outside appearances that leave no doubt. Like those cute little freckles I used to get every summer. Now they have changed somehow: growing together and not going away at summer's end. You think there would be a more pleasant name for them than age spots, right? I'll make a mental note to work on that. And speaking of working, that's exactly what I need to be doing to these feet of mine. Is anyone else scrubbing and filing their feet before they get a pedicure? It's like a little gremlin takes some old lady's feet and switches them with mine while I sleep, honest to God!! Chuck's feet are smoother than mine and that's an true statement. (I'm sure he'll be proud I shared that!) I can remember my grandmother telling me when I'd go to Florida as a teenager that walking on the beach would make my feet smooth. I didn't understand then. My feet were smooth at one time, honest. There's not enough sand on the beach to take care of these puppies now. Tip your pedicure person well. Especially if they perform the miracles mine does.
I could go on and on, I guess, but I'm kinda making myself sad (I thought pity parties were supposed to make you feel better :/ ). On the bright side, at least I've lived long enough to have all these things happen to me. I've laughed a lot (as the crows feet tell), nursed two babies (as my boobs can tell), I've danced above and below the equator and climbed many mountains (both literally and figuratively). If my body wants to slow down a little, I guess it's earned the right. With age comes many maladies, sure, but there also comes experience and wisdom. And there's no doctor, or procedure, or miracle cream that can make that claim. So rise up all you 30-somethings! (If your knees will let you!) Let's be proud of just how far our bodies have taken us over the years. We don't have to put ourselves out to pasture just yet! ;)

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