Monday, April 4, 2016

I Am Really 52?

Accepting middle age has been a slow process. Having a 10x magnifying mirror has been a necessary curse. Not a day goes by that I don’t lift an eyelid, pull back my cheeks and lift my forehead, you know, just to see if it would make a real difference.

Age 40 came with 70 pounds of weight loss in a matter of 6 months. I don’t recommend that. The obsession worked and a new creature was birthed. A younger, much sexier, more confident person was revealed. I remember shopping at the local mall, walking by the shops and seeing myself in the window reflection, almost shocked with delight, “OMG, that’s actually me!” I was stunned. Everyone was stunned. And that was fun.

So 52, 8 years of a wonderful marriage (finally), and 40 lbs of loving and enjoying life beyond my wildest dreams packed on. I swore I’d never let it happen to me again, the weight, that is. I battle to get back to where I can manage it again.  There’s exercise but clearly not enough. There’s this complete foodie obsession he and I both have. And it’s damn good. There’s this out of control food spending. It’s all played a part.  “Honey, we need to exercise and here’s this plan/spreadsheet. All you have to do are these three exercises every other day and some cardio on the off days,” he says. But he doesn’t know me. He doesn’t remember that when we first started planning our lives, I was up by 4:50am every morning running. Every. Single. Morning. Running. But he didn’t have that lifestyle. He liked to just roll over.. and over and over. It is the stuff love and life are made of but it was extremely detrimental to my health and weight. Thus the 40+ lbs. The rolling over and over, that is not just him. That was me, starving for affection. Starving for someone on the same page of life and love as me. And I had found it and him. My Mr. Wonderful.

As if the weight weren’t enough for these 8 years, I’ve passed over the half century mark into the official middle age. And I have this mirror. And the mirror tells way more than I want to accept. The weight. The effect of ever-loving gravity on my sweet face, my neck. The crinkles around my lips. The hoods over my eyes. If I had the money, there’s a fortune to be made with all the nip/tuck, lift/suck I need! I am paralyzed by fear of what all that messed up work does. I’ve yet to find someone that any of that facial work looks good on.

It’s been a sad kind of acceptance… the weight, the gravity, the puffy ankles, the inner and outer thighs love handles. So I seek the words of the empowered middle age warriors who say they have embraced all these wrinkles, weight gain, hot flashes, night sweats, snoring, and thinning hair. I for one am doing my workouts, cutting my calories, running (as soon as weather permits)… cause I know that’s what has worked for me. I hope it will again!