Posts Tagged ‘middle age’

Being an Invisible Person

Posted: July 14, 2019 in Writing
Tags: ,

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Image by https://pixabay.com/users/anwarramadhan

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Photo by Daniel Clay on Unsplash

I think it was when I saw you had gone to great lengths to Photoshop in your thigh gaps. I know damn well you don’t have thigh gap any more than I do. I know that you, like I, hate to wear anything that doesn’t cover our thighs because by the end of the day, we’ve got a rash from our thighs constantly rubbing against each other when we walk.

When I saw that you gave yourself perfect thighs (including NO cellulite) I stopped being amused and started to get angry. Not really angry but just enough to feel myself want to reach through the monitor and bitch slap the shit out of you.

What the fuck are you doing?

You have never had a thigh gap and never will. Well you didn’t until the invention of Photoshop, which apparently you have mastered, though you have told me on too many occasions for me to count that you barely know how to use Google.

Apparently that was a lie and that’s why I’m pissed off. I guess the desire to have perfect thighs can cause a woman to get out of her comfort zone and figure out an app to make herself look better.

You and I go way back. We’re the same age. I know how confident you were about yourself and your life. I know what it’s like to be insecure and afraid. When did that happen to you? There’s no sin in admitting to a trusted friend that you are scared or unhappy, but when you lie to me I know that the first lie was to yourself.

You constantly post on Facebook what a wonderful marriage you have and though I don’t disagree that the two of you have been married a long time, you have told him that the only way you’ll ever not be married to him is via death. Now I can’t speak for your husband, but if a man said that to me, I’d head for the hills and not look back. I see him flinch and quickly smile when you say that. You’re not seeing what I see.

I know that your husband is terrified of you. He’s afraid to say anything. I’m not saying that he wants to leave you, because he probably doesn’t because you coddle him. You are the first person to actually care for him. But I hate seeing the fear in his eyes whenever he wants to disagree with you. You’ve badgered him into silence and compliance. He’s too sweet and maybe too scared to say anything.

You and I are too old and have gone through too much for you to be so worried about what people think of you. I know that the last trip you went on and posted on Facebook was a huge disappointment. I know that you had a horrible time because you couldn’t get along with the group of people you were with. But you didn’t post that. You weren’t honest. You weren’t truthful and though I don’t expect anyone to air their dirty laundry on social media, you’re doing worse than that. You are lying to yourself and therefore everyone else.

If we have learned nothing else as women of a certain age, it’s that we may not have much and we may have been discriminated against everyday of our lives, we always fought for our integrity, our honesty, and our transparency. Because without integrity you’ve got nothing. You know that. We’ve had long discussions about it over the years. We know that the only way to be free, is to first be honest with ourselves and let the world see us as we are. We know that there’s no shame, only pride, in getting older and proudly wearing our lives on our face without apology.

We earned every damn wrinkle and gray hair.

We earned every scar and imperfection and we’re proud of them. We wear them like a badge of honor.

You were a bad ass.

When did you get scared? When did you decide that your appearance was more important than your mind? What happened that made you run and decide to put on a false personality for the world to see? What changed? What scared you? Was it looking in the mirror one day and seeing how your skin was now sagging? We’re all going through that. Hell, I hate seeing myself in the mirror. I put my make-up on as quickly as possible because though I think of myself as a much younger age, the mirror tells me differently. I fucking hate mirrors and can’t handle taking a selfie because there aren’t enough filters to make me see myself in the way that I think about myself. I know it’s part of life and I’d rather grow old than die young, but I don’t need to see wrinkles and my sagging neck. I’m not a believer in cosmetic surgery, but I admit I’d pay money to have the neck I had at 20.

Was it when you looked down and wondered where your tits went? That’s the point we all realize that gravity isn’t always our friend.

Was it when you couldn’t fit into your clothes anymore smack in the middle of menopause? I know that one too. I’ve always been able to lose weight whenever I wanted to, but the last 5 years changed all that. I woke-up one day with an additional 20 pounds. I swear the fat fairy came one night and plunked extra fat right on my stomach and hips and shrank my boobs. So not funny. It felt like it was overnight because one day, out of nowhere, my jeans didn’t fit anymore. I had to buy a bigger size (which took me months to do until I couldn’t stand the suffering of wearing too tight jeans all day and ended up with a yeast infection) and I almost started to cry in the fitting room. I didn’t because I didn’t want to admit I was bothered about it. I didn’t want to admit that after all the years of managing my weight and being fit, Mother Nature decided to play a cruel joke on me and gave me back all the weight I lost and kept off for years.

It was as if all of it no longer mattered, so why try?

Was it when you had to begin coloring your hair because the gray appearing faster than you could keep up with it? I know that one too. I now do my roots the very second I see the gray start to reappear. I should have purchased stock in L’Oreal for the amount of money I have spent on hair dye the last 30 years. It must have been something like that or something happened because I knew our friendship was on the rocks when you accused me of flirting with your husband. If you knew me at all you would know that is the last thing I would ever do. I wrote it off to the wine we were drinking and a slip of the tongue on your part. But I was wrong because you began to insist that I had done that. Later you confided that’s what you used to do as a younger woman. I knew that whatever you were running from, you were now projecting onto other people.

That made me sad and angry. That was the last time I saw you. But that didn’t stop me from seeing your posts on Facebook. It didn’t stop me from caring about you but from a distance because that was not something I was willing to have in my life. I didn’t want to step into something that not only wasn’t my creation, but was something that was only in your own mind.

What happened to you and where did you go? I’m not saying you need to show the world your cellulite and be proud of the muffin top we all have as older women, but I always thought you would be honest and proud of who you are because you should be. You’ve accomplished a lot in your long life. You have suffered great tragedy and come through it. I’ve always admired your disagreeable nature towards the world but now you’re toning yourself down, you’re dimming your light because of social media. You’re suddenly worried about what you look like and what people think of your looks and life.

Stop it. Log off. Stop posting. Stop caring about what the world thinks of you because darlin’, it will always disapprove of you. The world is not conducive to intelligent women, so stop trying to appease the Gods because it will never happen.

We’re older women.

We are valuable.

We are bad ass and we don’t listen to anyone who doesn’t see it.

Get back to being you because that is more than good enough and fuck anyone who doesn’t think so.


I recently turned 64 and that makes me a bad ass because I wasn’t always sure I’d make it this long. No, nothing as interesting as a disease or a horrible upbringing or even a bad life. No, I wasn’t sure I’d make it because I’ve dealt with too many losses and betrayals that I never saw them coming. Then again, if you see a betrayal coming, maybe then you’d have enough of a warning to stop it or at least get out of the way.

I consider myself a bad ass because I refuse to let the world change me. Every morning as I am just about to wake-up, the demons come. I call them demons because I really like that word and after having just binged watched the show “Lucifer” my affinity for demons is much higher.

You know the ones I mean. The ones that poke at you when you are your most vulnerable and whisper all your failures in your ear. Your failed marriages. Your inability to not only sustain a relationship, but the fact that you haven’t ever had a truly successful one. Sure, there were times when things were good with my husband, but they were few and far between and certainly not enough to keep me hoping.

Or how about the demon that reminds you every day that if you hadn’t been such a dumb ass, you never would have lost your house?

Then there’s the one that constantly reminds you of your debts that you’ll never be able to pay off because you’re a loser?

I think my favorite demon is the one that reminds me that I’m getting older and I’m still alone and will probably die alone at home and no one will discover my body for days.

I hear them but I don’t listen to them. I may not be able to stop the random thoughts that drift around in my mind as I wake-up in pain and with a headache most mornings, but that doesn’t mean I have to listen to them.

The only thing that shuts those fuckers up is motion. Demons don’t like action. They don’t like it when you start moving and pushing forward into the day.

Anyone that wakes up scared, worried, in pain, hurt, sad or in any way wanting to roll over and sleep for a week, but still gets up, is a bad ass.

Doesn’t matter how you got to where you are, you’re still here and still fighting.

Doesn’t matter the mistakes you made; if you are still getting through the day the best way that you can, you’re a bad ass.

Doesn’t matter what people think of you or the promotions you didn’t get or the muffled sobs you make at the gas pump — if you got up and gave it another shot and didn’t quit, you are a bad ass.

I turned 64 and I am so far from where I wanted to be at this age. I didn’t prepare for the disappointments that I faced, but I did learn that it’s not about what happens to you — it’s all about your attitude towards it.

Granted there are a few people that I do not think fondly of, but that’s OK. There’s no “Great Memo In The Sky” that dictates how anyone should feel. The problem is if I let it fester inside me and let it hamper my own joy and happiness. It’s not that I’m running around spreading glitter and rainbows, but I do work hard to have a positive attitude as best as I can each day. Those that still annoy me is because I haven’t quite made the step to let it go and that’s simply because there’s something else I need to learn about it. There’s some piece of the puzzle I haven’t taken responsibility for. There’s some unknown reason I hold onto my anger towards them.

Maybe I will figure it out and maybe I won’t, but the fact that we are still standing, still swinging at the plate and still hopeful and not a victim, makes us the biggest bad asses of all — we’ve had plenty of reasons to quit and we don’t.

Failure is not an option.

How to turn 56

Posted: June 10, 2011 in funny stories
Tags: , , ,

Yep, today’s my birthday and it’s official – I am 56 years old.

Not quite sure how it happened, but it has.

I’m on “the other side” of 50. That means I am no longer in my early 50’s but now “approaching 60.”

Very strange concept. Can’t say that I like it and can’t say that it bothers me.

So, what’s the best way to celebrate turning 56?  Like this:

 

The correct way to turn 56 - party at Six Flags

So, that’s what I did. 11 of us spent last Saturday at Six Flags in the pouring rain and loved every minute of it.

The other great thing about my birthday is that I share it with Emma, my great niece who was born on the 9th but I am convinced she really was born on my birthday and that there is a great conspiracy to keep that fact quiet.

So Emma, who just turned 8, not only shares the same last name as I but the same birthday and nothing will convince me otherwise.

It was a great day that my sister arranged. We had a blast, had a wonderful dinner and I don’t remember that much after the 3rd drink. Well, I do, but it’s a bit fuzzy. Thank God my niece Vanessa was there to drive.

Some of these wonderful people sat in a hot tub or swam after dinner. I didn’t have a bathing suit to bring because, well, first of all, I threw them all away last year. I had lost a lot of weight and there was no way I was going to wear the “fat chick suit” for any reason.

Secondly, most women around my age really aren’t all excited of getting into a bathing suit. We’ll do it, but it’s not something we jump up and down about. Maybe if everyone else wearing one is our age, then it’s not such a big deal.

But to put on a suit when you don’t know who’ll be looking at your ass ? I might have IF I had a really hot suit to wear, but I didn’t and I didn’t want to spend my birthday weekend trying on bathing suits. I wanted to have a good time and not be stressed about my thighs.

No one looks good trying on bathing suits at Target with the harshest lights possible shining down on you in a little room with mirrors that make you look 10 pounds heavier and show every single flaw you have.

So, I passed on the idea and instead just hung-out, had fun, ate too much and enjoyed the company of some of the most wonderful people in the world.

Now I am getting all the birthday wishes on Facebook and it makes me smile. I forgot today was my birthday. It was so-last-week, but it really is today. I really am 56 today and I feel like it should matter, but it doesn’t.

I thought I would be stressed or worried about it, but I’m not. I’m glad I’m still here. I’m amazed I made it past 40, so everything after that is icing on the cake.

I love my life and there isn’t much I would change about it, so I really can’t complain. Well, OK, there is one thing I would change and that would be having someone to share it with who was human, not a pet, and a male. That would be kind of cool I think.

But then again, maybe not. The jury is still out on that.

And that’s cool with me.