Middle-age Spread is Screwing with my Head
0 comment Tuesday, July 29, 2014 |
Every Tuesday and Thursday I take Mr. M to the Y for swim practice. And every Tuesday and Thursday I walk past a room marked "Active Older Adults." As if active older adults are anomalies, deserving of a special label; the exception to the rule. Is there a room, I wonder, marked simply "Older Adults"? It would help the older actives distinguish themselves from the older nots. And what is "older" anyway?
The other day someone called me for my fax number. I couldn't remember it. A few days later, Mr. M and I were in the car; he wanted to play the "spelling" game. Inspired by a fire hydrant I'd spotted ahead, I was going to give him "hydrant." Except I couldn't remember what the damn thing was called. Spell "hydrate," I said, "no, no wait! Spell . . . . hell. Mr. M, what is that thing right there that the firemen use to get water?" What the hell is happening to me?
No one told me hitting forty would be like being hit by a freight train. Now, the aberrant squiggly hair occasionally appears on my chin. Last Sunday I felt one and immediately ripped it out, like it was a tumor. Every morning I check vigilantly for visible nostril hairs. This is not fun.
For younger moms, there are all sorts of clever sayings. They bug me. Things like "sleep is for the weak." Ha! How about "sleep is for a week"? Or "sleep is not for cheeks" unless you want to wake up with wrinkles on your face that stay there until, oh, around four o'clock in the afternoon. Why did no one tell me about pillow face?
And oh, the unexpected joy that comes when someone mistakes me for Mr. M's grandmother. My mother just laughs and gloats when this happens (she's never been mistaken for his great-grandmother, you see).
Nora Ephron says she feels bad about about her neck. Just her neck? Oh, go on! I feel bad about my neck, my nape, my frenulum, even. And I feel really bad about my BAT. I may not have cankles but I've sure got back fat. And thighs? Are not to be discussed. You think you've got cottage cheese? Girlfriends, I've got mansion cheese. And a lot of unwanted cleavage. I can be up to my neck in it instantly, just by turning on my side.
The Cyberswim catalogue came this week. Oh, happy day. There were funny little initials under the suits that I had to look up. MW stands for minimize waist, TC means tummy control. There are just so many initials; MT: minimize thighs, EL: elongate legs, ET: elongate torso. MB is one I'm sure we'll all want: "minimize backside." My personal favorite is SH, for "slenderize hips." I'd take the "all of the above" suit, but they don't sell one. How about an MM, for "minimize matronly"?
Gentle unlined readers, like beautiful Becky at Suburban Matron, email me the dearest, most earnest questions, like "what are Frownies? how do they work?" These young women haven't encountered the vertical lines between our brows, the horizontal ones that streak across our foreheads. "My dear young Becky," I'd like to reply, "if you don't know what they are, you don't need them." But that would sound too harrumphy, too Andy Rooney curmudgeonly. It's not her fault she's never heard of my botox in a box. It's my face's fault that I have.
As for my vision? Gone, completely. I'm so dependent on my reading glasses I can't even start the dishwasher without them. I've taken to sprinkling them in random drawers throughout the house so that when I need to, I can see. But I will NOT wear a pair around my neck. No sir. Well, at least not this year.
Of course, not being able to see is a blessing at times . . . especially in hotel bathrooms under cruel fluorescent lights. Is anyone besides me hoarding incandescents? Pretty soon there won't be any more. I imagine the day will come when I treat my incandescent bulbs like Faberge eggs, hauling them out on holidays, or for special dinner parties.
Alrighty then. I'm off to pick Mr. M back up from swimming. He reports that last week he saw an older man in the men's locker room and "his bottom sort of flopped when he walked." See how it is for men? They flop around in happy oblivion. It's just not fair.