Growing up my elders often shared, “It sucks to get old.” Typically, the comment followed an injury or a bout with the flu or cold. They were always sure to add, “The body just doesn’t bounce back like it used to.” The bounce back part when it comes to certain parts of my body, I’m a believer. But the getting old sucks piece, it’s tempting, but I’m not buying in.
A couple of weeks ago, I was out walking and mistook an ice patch for a puddle of water. (How my eyes deceive me. ) I felt like it was in super slow mo. My legs kept moving as they left the ground and gravity pulled me down with an oomph. “Dangit!” I thought to myself, “This is not going to be good.” I looked back at the right butt cheek that took the impact of the fall to see my favorite walking pants torn. I wanted to pull down the pants to assess the damage but I noticed a man walking towards me and thought likely not a good time.
“You o.k. ma’m?” Ugh, “Yes, thank you, I’m fine.” I walked with a limp and I thought for sure I was out of commission for awhile. Then I noticed my knee was bleeding and I was immediately brought back to my youth.
Remember the summer of scabby knees? I wore those scabs on my knees and elbows as a badge of courage. In fact the success of summer was dictated by the number of kids who showed up on the first day of school with the scabbiest of knees. That thought made me smile. I then realized that here I am at 50 something, I can still wipe out and walk away, sans tears. I began smiling at the fact that I can be outside and move my body fluidly, without limitation. Even though that fall did set me back a week or two, I have got the absolute best scabby butt cheek in the world. And I feel like the kid I did in summer, with my badge of courage. Unfortunately, I can’t share it. Well, I guess I could but somehow I’m thinking the reaction would go from cool to creepy.
So when I hear folks drone on and on about how age slows the healing process (yes, it does) or how we just can’t do what we used to I have to move on. I can either buy in to it or walk away knowing that things may be different now, but I can still sport a scab with the best of them! Who say’s getting old sucks? Not me.
Here’s to scabby knees!
I never had to wear glasses until the printing on everything started getting smaller. One day my eye doctor broke the news to me, “It’s not the print, it’s your eyes you need glasses.” “What? My eyes are fine, I see just fine!” He insisted I get fitted for lenses. I didn’t need regular glasses I needed the ones that help you see close up, far away and in between. I pleaded for contact lenses, and he said I’d hate them. I got them anyway. I hated them. So I decided to take the plunge, admit my weakness and get glasses. After two weeks they arrived, I put them on and the choir sang, the blues were bluer, reds were redder. Think I’m exaggerating? I’m not. I gotta tell you, vanity totally robbed me of being able to see through a clearer lens. The times I ordered things off the menu that I had no clue I was getting. The times at stores where I thought the price tag was 19.00 only to choke on my gum when I handed them my credit card and it was 190.00. And on and on the inconveniences go. Vanity outweighed 20/20 vision. So I started thinking about all of my friends that are wearing cheaters, or getting glasses and I believe there’s a reason that eye sight goes and why same age couples should stick together.
Think about it. Young eyes see everything. Every hair on your chinny, chin, chin, large pores, all of it. I know it because that’s what I see with my glasses. Think about it, if your spouse or significant other has the same crappy eye sight as you do, he/she can’t see those wild chin or mustache hairs or in some case mole hairs. Right? We can see their ear hair and outgrown eyebrows. Imagine the older person that connects with the young person with sharp eyes. Do you think they look at those tiny little things we can’t see and think to themselves, “yuck.” If I were a twenty something and saw the curly grey hairs from my spouses ears, something tells me I’d be shopping around for someone my own age.
I think bad eyes were the creators way of making sure that the scorecards are even and you can’t see my obvious signs of aging and I can’t see yours. Therefore, we both believe that we look as great as we did the day we met. Pretty brilliant thought, eh?
I now have glasses and my husband just wears cheaters which means when he puts them on he’s only looking at a menu or newspaper, not the neck hair I forgot to pluck. I’m grateful for the ability to see through younger eyes again, but the difference is that when I see the aging process on my spouse, it simply reminds me we’re growing old together and that doesn’t make me want to run away, it makes me smile.
Here’s to seeing what you want, and ignoring the rest!