Over the Hill?
Just as I had, for the past week, being trying to convince myself that this was not happening- nor will it ever happen to me, that somewhere, somehow, someone had made a VERY big mistake about that number on my birth certificate, that there is NO way in hell that I could be turning 40 this year!
"SOMEONE IS GOING TO PAY BIG - TIME FOR THIS BLUNDER!" I thought.
While sitting at the dining room table with a coffee and a smoke this morning, reading lastnights paper, I happened upon an article "Age is the age - old question" by a Wellington - based freelance writer....and of course I had to read it, thinking there would be tips & tricks to get rid of these age-lines that are quickly appearing all over...... unwanted & definately should not be there at my young age...
Boy......was I ever wrong!!!!!!!
Heres the article:
I write this as a middle - aged woman. At 30, I considered myself in my late 20s; at 39, I was in my mid - 30s; now, at 40, there is no getting away from it.
Even more depressingly, I realise I have made the crucial tactical error of leaving it far too late to start lying about my age.
Even if I attempted to deny the evidence on my birth certificate, all the signs of middle - age are there. I have strong views on the declining standards of politeness among shop assistants; I bore children with anecdotes about School C, corporal punishment and fountain pens; I willingly spend Sunday afternoons in garden centres.
I would rather watch America's Next Top Model than go clubbing; I refuse to attend any gigs without seating; I asked for a foot spa for my birthday; and I heartily disapprove of Kate Hawkesby's wardrobe.
A few weeks ago, for several nights in a row, I felt an uncomfortable pressure on the bridge of my nose every time I lay down. I attributed it to sinus trouble, then to stress, before realising it was the formation of a new wrinkle.
I don't yet resemble Keith Richards, but there are barely visible grooves on my face that trace the route of future wrinkles, like the butcher shop posters that show farm animals marked out with the dotted lines that will determine which cuts of meat they are to be turned into after death.
Turning 40 has made me realise that, extraordinarily, I must have passed a physical peak. I can hardly imagine when that might have been but I'm enormously relieved I didn't know at the time. The hope of improvement was the only thing that kept me going.
I have a clear visual memory of sitting next to a middle - aged woman as a child and comparing my smooth brown legs in their red shorts with the fleshy, pitted, heavily veined legs, revealed by the woman's hitched - up sundress. How could she bear being inside that body, I wondered.
When you're young, you think your body is as fixed and reliable as the colour of your eyes. You can't imagine it deteriorating or losing its strength or changing in ways that make you unrecognisable to yourself.
Women, I think, approach ageing differently from men. Men are afraid of death while women worry about the loss of what they once were. Perhaps women fear death less than men because those of us with children have come to regard another life as more important than our own.
We've already moved off centre stage. The onset of middle - age seems a confirmation of that decision rather than the start of a new process.
Shortly before Christmas, I spent several minutes trying on a beautiful length of tweedy green fabric in the mirror of a crowded gift shop before remarking to the owner that it was rather short for a scarf. That's because it was a table runner, she barked.
This is exactly the sort of thing that happened to me all the time at the age of 16, when I was able to comfort myself that I would no doubt become far more competent with age. I no longer have any hope of that. I have accepted that I will remain an incorrigible bungler.
But while middle age is largely about the acceptance of painful home truths, it is also a time when the way ahead seems that much clearer. I now realise that heardly anything really matters - work least of all.
I know that the auspicious, long - awaited moments always disappoints and that joy cannot be planned or scheduled. Picnics on the beach, dog walks in the park and wet Sunday afternoons spent in front of a roaring fire with a friend and a bottle of Talisker are far more reliable paths of happiness than anything you can buy in a shop.
H L Mencken, the early 20th - century US satirist, once wrote: "The best years are the 40s; after 50 a man begins to deteriorate, but in the 40s he is at the maximum of his villainy."
Times have changed since then, and I hope that women as well as men can feel entitled to be at the maximum of their villainy in their 40s. It's something to aim for, at least.
Although it's a lovely article, yes I do admit it, I am still not convinced.....
How can I be turning 40 this year?
There is NO way I'm a MIDDLE - AGED woman...I mean, how can that be? Something went wrong somewhere!
Have I been asleep while this has happened? 20 years couldn't have gone by THAT fast!
I mean....for christ sakes.....it seems like only yesterday I was this young beautiful, blonde with a tight, toned body....I woke up one day and in her place I find this strange woman, a woman with greying hair, boobs that will only stay looking perky when in a bra - without one they have a tendency to meet up with your belly button, a stomach that has somehow taken on the form of a plate full of jelly....can't run....I feel as though I'm in the middle of a bloody earthquake...everything shakes, I try desperatly to find any hint of muscle....seems the only well toned part of my body now is my bloody feet!
What went wrong?
I always thought I'd have the same body - look the same as I got older....boy, the things we take for granted eh?
People say you're only as old as you feel....and I say blah!
I might feel like I'm still 19 - 20 but noone can see your mind....they see the outside package and that never lies..
Does that mean I'm over the hill?