When I was fifteen, fifty-something year old women were absolutely ancient. They were grandmothers with funny looking glasses and baggy house dresses. I declared I would never look like that, not even when I was ninety-something.
When I was thirty, fifty-something year old women were kind of old. They were mothers with no nonsense attitudes and awful taste in shoes. I might have a no nonsense attitude but never would I wear those orthopedic shoes with a silk suit.
When I was forty, fifty-something year old women were my older cousins. Gosh, women were getting younger every generation.
Now, I’m sixty-something. I’m not ancient even if I do have funny looking glasses, wear baggy clothes and orthopedic shoes. At least I’m still full of spit and vinegar and have taken this mid-life crisis by the horns, looked it right in the face and spit in its eye.
Even with all my bravado, I have figured out a few things about mid-life. Hey, don’t laugh. Sixty-something is mid-life if one intends on living to be over a hundred. Strange things happen at this stage in today’s sixty-something women.
Mid-life can bring out the angry, bitter side in a woman. You look at your latte-swilling, beeper-wearing know-it-all teenage granddaughter with a tattoo of a Celtic love symbol on her ankle and a gold ring in her belly button and you think, “For this? For this I gave birth to her mother and I still have stretch marks?”
It’s when our necks begin to look like they’re made from the same material as a rubber chicken. If they would put all that knowledge they use to launch rockets into making some kind of control top turtle neck sweater that gives the appearance of a youthful neck, I would definitely order one in every color.
It’s when women no longer have upper arms, they have wingspans. We are no longer women in sleeveless shirts, we are flying squirrels in drag. Forget Julia Robert’s smile or Faith Hill’s legs, just give me upper arms with no droopy, baggy bat wings.
It’s when we sit, waiting for the mammogram, along with a room full of other women who easily fit into the mid-life category. After no one needs one of those done yearly before they reach mid-life. It’s realizing that this will be the only time someone will ever ask any of us to appear topless in a film again.
Mid-life brings with it the wisdom that life throws us curves and we’re now sitting on our biggest ones. It’s when you finally get the courage to stand before the floor length mirror after a shower, drop the towel and open your eyes, and you can see your fanny. Only you didn’t turn around. Gravity has grabbed it and it’s sagging as bad as the upper arms.
It’s when you want to grab every firm young lovely in a tube top, shake her soundly and scream, “Honey, even the
Roman Empire fell, and those things will, too?”
It’s when we shave our legs less. Which is good because we have more time to devote to taking care of our newly acquired mustache.
It’s when your memory really starts to go and the only thing you retain is water.
You know you’ve crossed the mid-life threshold when your Body-by-Jake now includes Legs-by-Rand McNally (more red and blue lines than the map of the state of
You start pondering the “big” questions: what is life, why am I here and how much Healthy Choice ice cream can I eat before it’s no longer a healthy choice?
The good news about this time of life is that the glass is still half-full. Or course, the bad news is that it won’t be long before your teeth are floating in it.
Now tell me ladies, what is it about mid-life that has you draping all the mirrors in the house to preserve your sanity and your vanity?