Now that my age is finally catching up with me I have found that this is much easier said than done. I am SO not kidding. I have always been an old soul, so while 20 jarred me a bit (mostly because childhood was over and I completely missed it), 30 just felt as though my body was finally catching up with my brain!
My brother accused me of being a “mutant 40 year old lawyer in a kid suit”, when I was six! Lol So the 30's were prime time for me. I was a baby making machine! The forties went by in a flash, as I finished up child-bearing, was heavily home educating/discipling our decently full quiver, added elder-care to the mix, and also entered a longish season of deliverance from suppressed memories – not a few! And even 50 – gasp, the half-century mark – came and went without excess trauma for me. I was still going full steam ahead! I still don't know the number of that train that derailed me!
But something has definitely changed in the seven years since I crossed that line! It feels like all of life finally did catch up to me, all at once! Or maybe it is just the first time that I actually dared to sit down and notice it. Okay, okay. I didn't really choose to sit down. My body just rebelled at the abuse I had subjected it to, and refused to get up! My “get up and go” just got up and left, and now it only visits randomly for short periods of time. And even worse, it is threatening a very final and ugly divorce if its terms are not fully complied with! Lol And OH MY GOSH I LOOK SO OLD!!!!
Of course some days are better than others. There are days, not as many as I'd like though, when rest was effective, the makeup doesn't disappear into my skin, like oil on dead, dry wood, and my clothes don't make me look like Bozo the Clown! The planets are properly aligned, the moon is at its proper cycle, etc. etc.....
But an awful lot of days I look like an escapee from the memory unit! My eyes look so tired, it takes more and more extreme measures to smile and not look thoroughly demented, and it requires so much more energy than it is generally worth not to slump and give away even MORE ground to gravity! I am slowly sinking into the earth. If I live long enough I will become a mere blob on the ground, and will just slowly evaporate, and there will be nothing left but a pile of out of date clothing to remember me by!
This sounds like lunacy perhaps, but I am being deadly serious! Aging is so challenging! It is so hard to get motivated and stay motivated. It is so hard to accomplish simple feats – mentally and physically. And this is difficult because for 50 years I was the queen of multitasking! I could easily do ten jobs a day, and do them all decently well! Now getting dressed has become a major hurdle! One that I refuse to jump, several days a week!
For me, the mental thing seems to be getting stronger – in some areas at least. I have noticed a bit of relaxation where remembering things are concerned, like phone numbers. But part of that is our current codependency on our electronic secretaries! But seriously, I had no idea that getting delivered of old memories would also challenge the keeping hold of new ones! Who knew that my capacity for phone numbers was predicated upon my suppression ability!?!
Or perhaps that was just an unfortunate coincidence! Lol But it doesn't really matter, because what good is having great ideas, and mental stimulation, which your body refuses to support anything you want to do with the necessary activity!? My brain is still twirling at full tilt, but my body has crash landed, and is not recovering at its usual blinding speed this time.
I am NOT saying that I am down for the count! I would never seceed that easily! But I am saying that the “fight” is barely discernable to the naked eye – or to the bespectacled eye for that matter! I believe that things are happening spiritually – Thank God for that. But it sure hasn't made it to the outside yet. I look like bloody hell! And I move, if I move, like snails on vacation!
Of course I dress it up as best I can when I go out...I don't want to terrorize innocent by-standers! And people are very kind – or are experiencing similar tragedies and can't see my deterioration for their own – or have been around so that the gradual decline has been less of a shock – but for me – it is a regular shock to walk up to the mirror! Photos, and recordings are especially brutal! I feel like the face book meme, in which an obviously elderly lady says to her friends – “I think my house is haunted – every time I try to look into the mirror, some crazy old lady pops up so I can't see myself!” Yeah. That must be it!
Sorry for the whine-fest. I was just trying to record a song on my computer today, so I wouldn't forget the tune before Gene got home – and playing it back was so hard, in so many ways! I was just suddenly faced with how age is affecting my outward movements, speech patterns, and overall appearance! I don't feel that dang old! But I am really starting to look it!
There is this mixed bag, that I am not fading mentally as quickly. Well. It is a mixed bag. Of course it is great to retain the mental faculties! And feel that they are even sharpening in some ways! But then I am uber aware of the physiological changes! Which magnify that painful descent into physical “lessening”. Strength is less. Beauty is....well... not really less....but based on such different criteria than before! I was a beautiful young woman, and now I am a beautiful OLD woman! But our nation doesn't value OLD as it should!
But also, oddly enough, despite the obvious struggle I am having accepting the changes which are coming with this aging bit, I find that I love that “crazy old lady in the mirror” more than I ever have! I find that I want to pin medals on her for getting me this far! I find that I like what she has become – so much more than the person who had the gorgeous looks for that season. And I sure don't miss all that attention which came and went with those stunning looks! I do sometimes grieve the fact that I didn't know I was so good looking. I wish I hadn't been so down on myself! That has been one of the perks of growing old. A chance to like myself, to accept myself – and to let God change what He hadn't wanted build, and to heal what had been broken.
I find that I like the authority which comes with this gray hair – though the former respect is not as prevalent – but that also depends on the person a great deal. I am finding more respect than before, even with the general decline nationally. But that is likely due to the fact that I respect myself a great deal more!
So I am looking for ways to support this aging body, and to keep it in the best condition possible for as long as I need it! I am trying to adapt the clothes I wear to reflect who I am now. I am trying to get past the shock effect and get on with what I can do now – and to disregard the yapping of the world on how I look while doing it!
I do not want to waste these golden years in more unnecessary self-rejection – when really – this old lady is a bad-ass! And as soon as I can pull it up off the sofa I will whip it back into shape, and we will find the pace that suits it! Until then, please stand by....and...could someone please bring me that mineral water from the fridge? Lol