Archive for the ‘middle age’ Category

My F*#k It List
July 10, 2013

My F*#k-It List

Another birthday is approaching and even though I’m periodically annoyed with some of the physical realities, I am moving forward into middle age with surprising ease because I am also open to some of the positive gifts of growing older. Generally speaking for me, there is actually a converse relationship between my physical attributes and my overall contentment. I feel freer to be me, now more than ever before. Those youthful “should be’s” and “better do’s” are melting away with the years. Being of a certain age I’m confident and clear about what fits the real me. I can let go of other’s ideas about me, or women, or good mothers, or mature behavior.

The more I thought about this new freedom I began to realize that there is a whole number of things that are just NOT me, or right for me and from that “My F*#k It List” was born! This is the complete opposite of a “Bucket List”- that quaint Boomers exercise where one lists all the things they want to do before they “kick the bucket” to ensure that at the end of their life they are fulfilled and complete- I guess?
My list is all the things that I’m really never going to do, have no intention of doing, and feel no compulsion to ever complete or improve on. I’m embracing my authenticity!
Here you have it:

#1. I’m not going to look at my back. A dear friend recently described to me a depressing scene in her bathroom after a shower where she examined herself naked thoroughly from the back in the mirror and she was appalled, so I decided- why bother? I have a general knowledge about what is protruding, wiggling or even discolored back there, but I pay a doctor to make sure nothing is really wrong and beyond that what is back there is actually anyone who is behind me’s problem. F*#k em, they should up walking next to me anyway- catch up!

#2. I’m never going to pack light- and related to that,
#3. I’m never going to carry a small purse.
I want to be able to decide when I’m there according to my mood, the weather, my weight, and any other changing conditions what shoes, clothes and accessories I’m going to wear, so I’m willing to pay extra and yes, I do need help with my bags. As for all those orthopedic warnings about large pocketbooks ruining posture, and causing neck and shoulder injuries, please- I’m middle age- I’ve pulled a muscle just getting into bed. I maintain a miniature bathroom valet in my purse complete with over- the- counter everything, and lotions for all occasions and skin types. AND I have a membership or customer reward card from every retail store and eatery in North America. I’m going to be buried with this stuff- because you just never know – when life as we know it ends maybe you can still redeem points earned from Panera Bread for a free pastry.

#4. I’m never going to do a hot yoga class- or run a full marathon. I love to exercise, I run several times a week, and Yoga has given me back flexibility and balance that I thought was lost forever, BUT nothing should ever be done in triple digit heat- it’s called “Hell” cause it’s so fu*#king hot!
And because I’m a slow runner there is nothing ever created or imagined that I really want to do continuously, and repeatedly for over 5 hours- even eating chocolate cake for that long would not be fun. By the way- 26.2 is completely stupid number.

#5. (This one should be obvious.) I not going to clean up my language and stop dropping f-bombs in my conversations. I’m professional when I need to be, and I would never intentionally offend anyone, but with my friends, and when not in mixed company (children or Religious people) I will continue to exuberantly color my descriptions with “What the f*#k?”, “Get the f*#k out of here!” and “I can gauranf*#kingtee you…”

#6. I am not going to stop talking in that funny voice and making up words when I encounter a sweet puppy, a snuggly kitten or an adorable baby. I speak fluent “dog” to my dog Mae, and her neighborhood canine friends and their wagging tails confirm that my accent is perfect!

#7. I not going to wear pajamas or nightgowns- ever— I can’t get over the ridiculousness of getting dressed in clothes to go to sleep!!! —I’ll never parade around publically, but even in the nursing home of the future – it’s naked and nothing for sleeping.

This is not an exhaustive list, I intend to continually update the list with decisive “not gonnas” and “no f#*king way” for years to come. Actually my Bucket List is simply to keep adding to my F#*k It List. I encourage everyone to pursue deep self knowledge and create their own list of never- evers, challenging the status quo and the self improvers to sit down and shut the f*#k up.

Gravity
October 21, 2012

Like a lot of women my age- I pee my pants. 
 Occasionally it’s when I laugh or cough, or when I’ve had too much coffee or soda, but most recently it has begun to happen when I run.   I would love to blame it on  the trauma of childbirth( in order to add it to the list of things I’m compling to try to make my son feel guilty),  but the reality is – it’s just gravity. 

Gravity is a force most evident to women- from eyelids to uterus,  joined in the parade with our skin, breasts and various internal organs, marching in unison, in one direction- downward.  I’m convinced that considerably earlier than the 1600’s, there was at least one unnamed,observant woman, who has been denied the rightful credit for understanding  the laws of gravity–well before that apple-guy, Newton was exalted for his “discovery”.   I recently consoled a friend, informed that she needed to have a hysterectomy, that she should be glad they were cutting it out before it fell out. 

Gravity is not to be denied, it is a physical reality and regardless of what technical or medical advances the future may bring, you can count on it.  Even if I continue to preserve my overall health, I  still visualized myself as a triple -digit , white haired, woman insisting on remaining mobile, necitating being  pulled around in a large, red wagon with my used-to-be internal organs having migrated out of me, floating around outside my lower body.

Running has become one of my “medicines” – a self- prescribed activity that preserves my physical health, and because I do it with a group of inspiring women,  it also preserves my mental health.  This group has a weekly ritual of running eight miles before daybreak on Saturday mornings over a spectacularly beautiful course on Key Biscayne -ensuring a payoff for getting up that early ,with views of  awesome sunrises over the ocean. 

 Running compounds gravity, with the  the up and down motion, additional pressure is put on the bladder, leading to intermittent leakage.   My attempt to mitigate the effects of gravity while running was to begin to wear a sweetly named, smartly designed, very expensive diaper pad affixed to my underwear.  I have to say that I am routinely annoyed with advertizing and packaging strategies supposedly aimed at women, especially when the goal is solely to charge more for a product.  When I first investigated the “bladder control” aisle at the grocery store, I was stunned at the cost for the small, floral scented, pink packages, especially when I checked out the next aisle over. and compared the prices to the regular baby diapers, which were half the cost!  Clearly, they were made of the exact same material, but there was significantly less of it , since it was cut to fit discreetly inside the crotch panel of a woman’s underwear–  Another example of economic misogyny!

On a recent morning I was wearing one of those expensive lady diaper pads when I started out with my running group in the pre-dawn darkness.  As the light began to advance it became obvious that the usual, spectacular sunrise  was curtained by a very dark sky.  At around mile 4,  as we reached the approach to the bridge, the sky opened up and we were all drench in mere moments.  Running in the rain in Miami is a common occurence and barring lightening,  it is often preferred as a way to combat the stiffing humidity.   So we slowed our pace to match the decreased visibility and continued on. 

Suddenly, I sensed a heaviness in my shorts.  Panic struck  as I realized that the pad was uber- doing it’s job.  It is “Poised” to absorb liquids, all liquids, all the time. As we start up the bridge I am now pulling serious crotch weight.  It had never occurred to me to read the label on the package for volume capacity!  I have a flashback of my son as a toddler at the beach with a sandy, bloated, balloon diaper that impedes his movement, and weighs well over his own body weight when I finally wrestled it off of him. 

As we reached the bottom of the bridge, the pad’s sticky strips have reached their not-water-proof capacity and the pad is now unfastened from my underwear.  I now have what has quickly become the size and weigh of small, wet mammal mobile in my underwear. 

 As we approach the five mile mark with no bathrooms on this stretch of the course, it keeps raining, I keep running, and the  rain gorged, mammal migrates to the back of my shorts.  Due to extra weight, and my slowly building mortification I have now dropped to the back of my group to consider possible solutions:

Stopping mid course and digging around in the back of my shorts only to pull out a five pound blob and then what?–  Carry it dripping to a trash can visible, a 1/4 mile up ahead?  No, touching it is out of the question. 

I glance behind me and see other runners far enough in the distance, to go with the impulsive decision to just reach around my back, pull wide the elastic band on the bottom of my running shorts and

-yes,

you guessed it- 

Allow  Gravity to do it’s thing— 

  The massive, waterlogged bundle plops to the ground behind me as I continue to jog forward.   I am just about to relish the lightness of relief , when a bare chested, tall teenage boy over takes me on the path.  This course is a often used by local high school cross country teams and their sheer speed is remarkable– owing to why I didn’t see him when I glanced backward. 

With the phrase “my load lightened” having a new meaning,  I run to catch up with my group, and I’m amused  as
I consider all the possible explanations running through that young man’s head for what he just witnessed.