The Changes in Me


The reflection of my wife Linda in an mirror


The Changes in Me

          "And it isn't as if this happened slowly. It happened overnight. One day I was slim, the next, I was, well, matronly"

          My daughter and I went shopping last night at one of those big downtown department stores that still have mannequins and full size mirrors at every turn. As I walked towards one of these large reflective walls, I wondered, "What in the heck is my mom doing here? She came all the way from Florida just to help Allison and me shop?" But of course my mother is still in Florida, and I am here, looking at myself. Me, wearing bifocals on my nose, sporting hair that is perhaps a tad unnaturally brown, and carrying what appears to be a large barrel around my middle.

          I turned what they call "the Big 5-0" last year, and although the ages of 20, 30, and even 40 were merely numbers, 50 was quite a shock. It was as if my body said, "Hey, wait, I am supposed to be showing signs of wear. I guess it's time for me to get to work. " Suddenly, getting highlights in my hair just did not cover all the gray, my near-sighted vision went out the window, and for the first time in my life, my thighs rubbed together when I walked.

          I knew these changes in my body were bound to happen, and like death and taxes, they were inevitable, but one can't help but hope that Father Time will slip past you without waving his magic wand and adding a few inches to your waist and thighs.

          Actually, I'm not overly upset with the whole hair color thing, since it does afford me the opportunity to be a blonde or a redhead with the shake of a bottle. And while I never needed glasses in my life, I actually decided to celebrate the look by splurging on what I think are a very cool looking pair of glasses. The arthritis in my big toe? Well, that at least gives me a legitimate excuse for NEVER wearing stiletto heels again. These changes I can accept somewhat gracefully. It's the weight that's really got me riled.

          And it isn't as if this happened slowly. It happened overnight. One day I was slim, the next, I was, well, matronly.

          On the other hand, things could definitely be worse. I called my 83-year-old friend, Gloria, last week. She said she was feeling pretty frustrated right then because her arthritic hands were preventing her from plugging in her lamp. With a cheery tone in her voice, she said, "Oh well, I'll just have to go back to it later, when my hands have had a little time to rest least I'm still able to walk!" Now, do you suppose she is fretting right now about her tight waistband? I think not. It helps to have someone put things into perspective.

          Time does indeed march on, and change is indeed inevitable. I've got a lot to be thankful for, and the best I can do is accept it all with equanimity.

          I can smile, put on my glasses, touch up my hair, walk an extra lap or two in my new flat shoes, and perhaps let out the button on my pants when things get just a little too tight.....

Copyright 2009 Today's Transitions Magazine. All Rights Reserved.

                                                                                                        By Martha Wegner



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