May 28, 2013

Who You Calling Old?

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"You can tell we're getting old!" quipped the daughter of a friend (and a member of the youth group way back when I was the leader) after she and her husband spent a day hopping from one garden center to another.

I eyed her strong, willowy, not-quite-30 body, that rather unjustly, is not yet even showing signs of being pregnant and wondered.  If succumbing to the siren call of suburban landscaping marks a person as "old,"  what on Earth does that make me??

Hubby and I have drifted into the territory of going together to have blood work done at the hospital and then (as if that weren't bad enough) heading to the local diner for breakfast where we bicker over the menu.  I comfort myself with the knowledge that we haven't slipped into blue hair and velcro sneakers.  Yet.

What I want to know is when the heck did this happen?  I do know how old I am....still on the "good" side of 50, but I can see the other side from here and I don't even have to stand on my tippy-toes.  Yet, the mirror catches me by surprise.  Every. Single. Time.

Plodding into the bathroom each morning I expect to look into the mirror and see the fresh-faced, athletic, but slightly curvy 20-year-old I was when I got married looking back at me.  What I find instead is that she moved a long time ago and left no forwarding address.  The new woman staring back at me has a lot going for her, but it's going to take her a while to get it going.  Maybe you could check back around noon?

She peers at me through eyes that are simultaneously puffy, saggy, and wrinkly....and near-sighted because she left her glasses on the stand by the bed.  One eyebrow is turning gray.  Yes, only one.  Her chin has a twin and it sprouts hair like a mountain goat!  Her freckles have multiplied exponentially thanks to years of sun worship before anyone ever heard of SPF.  The gray in her hair defies all efforts to hide it and reappears two days after a $120 dye job.  Her muscles ache, her joints pop, and her ankles swell.  When she does remember to grab her glasses, they're bifocals.  To add insult to injury, when she turns on the radio for some music to cheer herself up....she has to tune in the OLDIES station to find her favorite songs.

As I stare at her in confusion (and maybe a bit of horror) she just nods and smiles like she knows something I don't.  Like maybe even though she isn't what anyone is ever going to call a hottie again, and despite all the aches and pains and inconveniences, that just maybe the best stuff is still waiting.


Amber of Airing My Dirty Laundry, One Sock at a Time invites us, each Tuesday to join her in Hey, It's Okay Tuesday!  The idea, which she borrowed from Glamour Magazine, is to celebrate our little "quirks."

Hey, It's Okay.... have put the exercise equipment you bought at a garage sale outside under the Shadynook, because suuuuurrrrrre you're going to exercise in the backyard where your mom, the neighbors, God, and everyone else can watch for their amusement. be mad at your husband for being mad at you for putting corn husks down the garbage disposal.  How were you supposed to know they'd turn into all these stringy fibers and gum the thing up? carry on as bad as the kids on the bus when one of them lets fly with a big old stinker that makes everyone's eyes water. encourage your dog to do something bad because it's so darn cute. not know if you're just experiencing end of the year burnout or if you really don't like your job any more. be more than ready to pack your bags and leave everyone and everything far behind.


Simone said...

You don't know how much we think alike. I was trying to think through a blog post and seriously decided to do one on being old. I will be 50 in July and it's not that it's bugging just seems like I was 9 yesterday. I also have those moments like you that I look in the mirror and wonder, "When did this happen?"

J and I are starting to rack up the frequent appointment points at the doctors and dentist office. Like you, I am tempted to run away to a place where I can just think and sleep and just be for a few days.

Maybe you're feeling a sense of adventure??? If so, I hope a job comes your way that will give you that.

Stacy said...

I have one more year until 50, but you pegged it. It isn't being 50 that bugs me but the sense of how quickly it all went.

Oh yes, a personal retreat sounds wonderful. Once school is done I will have more down time and this summer I have a beach vacation to look forward to and a trip to Tennessee with the ladies from church for training to teach Kay Arthur's Precept Bible study method.

Wouldn't it be wonderful if Oregon and Pennsylvania weren't so far apart. I sense a kindred spirit and think we could have some good talks. :)

Teri said...

Sister, I can relate to all of it...I mean ALL of it.

Beth Zimmerman said...

Love this post! One of your best yet! Though I did squirm just a little since I own velcro sneakers!

AiringMyDirtyLaundry said...

Ha, my husband is always getting on me for putting stuff down the garbage disposal.

mare ball said...

I can so relate to this. Puffy eyes, chin sproutings, but the inside of me feels the same as about 30. Aging is so weird. My dad just turned 90 and has the spirit of a 25 yr. old.


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