In a handful of days, I turn 50. It's a fact. Yes, yes, I know, it's better than the alternative, but I have to say, it's fucking with me... not all of the time, but during those moments when my guard is down.
It does not compute. 50 is my parents' age. 50 belongs to my aunts and uncles, or older siblings. I'm the baby of the family, how can I be 50???
Not to mention the fact that I'm still fighting inner wars and dramas from 15, 24, 32, 45... and probably more. Parts of me are caught up. Parts of me relish all I know now... the calm I have about certain areas of my life, but there are still parts of me that are panicking, thinking, WAIT!!! I'M NOT DONE YET!!! To be honest, in some ways, I haven't even started! But, if you're a female in the world, your shelflife is short... unless you move to the crone section. I'm allergic to dust. I don't want to move there.
Don't get me wrong... I don't need to be 25. I'm glad I'm not 25. I'm glad my children are growing and thriving and don't need me as much, OR... need me in newer, more wonderful ways, but still... 50.
I'm glad my creativity is loving that I'm 50. Although I'm no longer on the hip train of things, I see things and get things like never before, but still... 50.
My eyes are not what they were, my hair is not what it was, oh hell... nothing physical is what it was... and yet I feel like I finally understand things or have perspective on things I never have, but the joke is, it's too late. I've heard it a million times... "Oh! If only I knew what I knew now, but when I was younger!"
Don't get me wrong. It doesn't bother me every day. It has not crippled me, but... there is a large part of me that is wondering how it happened... it's so easy to get lost in the minutiae of a day... and then another... and another, and before you know it, you're looking at those days from the other end and it freaks you out... if only for a moment.
I also know that I'll look back on this in 10, or 20 years, and will laugh. HA! You were ONLY 50!
Grizzled and I celebrated our 20th anniversary last week. While cleaning out a closet, I found a video his father had made of part of our rehearsal, our rehearsal dinner and a snippet of the reception. Somehow, we both had missed this. Somehow, it came into our possession and we had no clue! We watched it the other day, for the first time... watching people who are no longer here, people who were so much vibrant and younger. We looked at ourselves. When I looked at my 20 yr-younger self, all I could think of was, "WHAT WAS YOUR PROBLEM!??! YOU WERE FINE! WHY DID YOU LISTEN TO EVERY ASSHOLE WHO HAD A COMPLAINT?" I'm trying to tell myself that now... so I don't look back in 20 years and think, come on... life was good! You're with people you like and love! Doing more or less things you like and love! So what if your boobs are past their perky date! So what if your ass is huge! So what if you have not achieved all you want to achieve! Thank gawd you haven't! You have years to live! Years to thrive! Shut the fuck up and embrace this!
I know this. Deep down I know this...
But man... there are days when I'd like to take this back to 25... or 35... and try it knowing what I do now. I knew it then. I believe I did. I just listened to too many others, like most of us do.
Maybe I'll get myself some celebratory earplugs. :)
I had to clean out a rarely used cupboard over the fridge so we could rip the cupboard down. It seems the new "regular" refrigerators they sell now don't fit in "regular" old houses. Anyhow... all that aside... look what I found!!!
No, I've got no time, but here's a photo... of my office window... looking out at the new bird feeder that is attracting all sorts of leetle birds... which are then attracting my neighbor's cat. Pffft. As bimler said on FB... it looks like I've got a cat feeder.
The animal feeder (rabbits are loving the stuff that falls on the ground) is filled with a "gourmet blend" for teeny-tiny birds... On Wednesday, I had my first real life encounter with an Indigo Bunting. I took a photo... through the screen... with my cell phone. It looked like crap and will not be posted. If you have not seen an Indigo Bunting... I hope at some point you do. It's like seeing a Blue Raspberry Slurpy flying around! It's like nothing should be that blue in nature and be REAL! But it was. It was glorious.
Laura's and fish's posts, as well as political discourse, has brought back memories... memories of being a young, single woman in the city... with a very dismal and unreliable paycheck. I believe I was working freelance jobs along with two part-time jobs... but still, paying for medical care was an issue, so I went to one of the Planned Parenthood-inspired places. It was not officially PP, but was basically the same deal. You paid for what you could, and most prices were reasonable.
Even though we were well into the latter half of the 80's, this place was right out of the 70's. Lots of ferns, lots of paneling, lots of Free to Be... You and Me stuff on the walls. I was fine with FTB...YAM, but did not necessarily want it every time I went for a check-up. It got even worse once I had to go a little more often. You see, you could not get your beloved birth control pills if your blood pressure was too high. I am notorious for having low blood pressure, but when in this place, with all of the questions, all of the doubtful looks, mine would shoot sky-high.
"We'll give you a month's worth of birth control pills, but you must come back and prove you're BP is ok!"
Before these visits I would chant... think of dolphins, think of dolphins, think of dolphins...
But when they'd come in to check me out and would ask something that merited a smart-ass answer, with me giving it, and them taking me seriously, my BP would shoot sky high. I knew the drill... take the woman, who may or may not be abused, to a dark room... and let her think of dolphins for 10 minutes. Test again.
Most of the time I could chill, and the Rx was mine.
There was one time though that 3 women came into the room and suggested it was time to get to know my body.
Huh?? I was in my 20's! I knew my body?? What do you mean?? Know my body??
They produced a plastic speculum and a mirror... I kid you not. I scanned the ferns for hidden cameras...
They told me no women truly owns herself until she can examine herself... see the beauty of her cervix. I told them I was fine with a hidden cervix. My cervix was doing what it needed to do and I also trusted the professionals who checked it out...
They took this 'no' as an issue. I was like, "No, you don't get it... I was raised by a very down to earth mother who was nurse and called a spade a spade. Sure, my father might have been a little squeamish about the workings of daughterly parts, but Mom was fully on board with open discussion. I don't have issues... in fact, I'd like to use my parts with the man I love, the man who doesn't beat me, the man who accepts me as I am... while I myself am accepting me as I am... OK?? Take the Pap test and let me be on my way!"
But they insisted... which I felt was incredibly wrong, but hey... I was at peace with my parts, and as I mentioned, wanted to freely use my parts, so I did it. Woo-hoo! Look at my cervix! Woo-hoo! Yay! It looks like... a cervix... Can I go now???
They tried to give me a speculum to take home, but I think I shocked them when I said I preferred the flesh variety. Fortunately, soon after, I got insurance and was able to go to a Dr, who never once suggested I get in touch with my cervix... a Dr who seemed to understand that I was hip to my stuff... but relied on a professional to look up under my chassis.
(Heh... when I go to add a link to type up above, TypePad says, "Insert Link"... See?? These are the kind of thoughts that got me into trouble at the Women's place!)
...and was whisked back to the 3rd grade... my love for Robin S, as sure a thing as any 3rd grader can experience. I was thrilled when we were asked to stay a few minutes after school to clean the blackboards. I remember as he stepped up onto the piano bench to reach the top of the boards, I noticed he was wearing the absolutely most heinous pair of Toughskins... and like that, it was over.
... should not see a lamblet... even in a photograph...
I grabbed one of the lamblets' cameras this morning to take some quick bunny shots. When searching the memory card, I found the above... Of course I did not see this scene when the photo was being taken, because I believe I was clinging to flatter rock formations NOWHERE NEAR THE EDGE POINT OF NO RETURN!