We don’t have any full length mirrors in the house. At least none that are portrait length and it’s a real faff to climb onto the bathroom counter and lie lengthways across it just to confirm that your legs are too old for shorts.
All our mirrors divide me in half so I have a pretty good idea of what the upper looks like but the lower quadrant is a bit of a mystery, though I have created this visual representation. Upper half is decent, except for the blusher which used to be on my cheeks but has sunk down my face due to gravity* (see brilliant theory of everything below).
But then it all goes wrong below the waist and everything sort of spreads out and I have to start wearing full coverage knickers that I was told were a sexy animal print but which turned out to be hyena skin. This body type is referred to as pear-shaped which is a highly undesirable shape. Except for pears.
*The reason for this is that as you hit middle age and thus closer to death, the earth’s gravitational forces start pulling you closer to the dirt. So everything starts the slow move south. That’s also why you get shorter as you get older. This is my brilliant theory of everything which I have mentioned here so don’t think about trying to steal it as your own brilliant theory of everything, because the Oscar is mine.
Being bottom heavy and wearing hyena-knickers is also a clear sign to the rest of the world that you are getting older and therefore of no real value or significance. This is one of my greatest fears this year as it is the last of my 40s and as John Lennon (almost) wrote, ‘and so this is 50, and what have you done?’ Once I am 50 that’s pretty much the last year that I’ll be able to claim to be at the halfway point of my life and frankly that’s pushing it.
My impending 50s, much like the 1950s, sound entirely dreadful. There’s the whole useless uterus thing and all the lovely symptoms that go along with it, though I find it annoying that I should have to experience them too even though my uterus is unsullied by nasty baby birth goop. As with my child-bearing hips, a uterus was a bit of a waste seeing as I failed to fulfill god’s purpose for me, even though he doesn’t exist so this would be like me having failed to live up to Superman’s expectations of me. Annoying do-gooders, both.
My fears about this age are largely what they’ve always been. That people will think I wear my hair short because it’s ‘easy’. That I will spend a large percentage of my day in sweat pants purchased from Athleta because they are ‘comfortable’ and cost slightly less than Lulu (already fulfilled this one). That I will talk about things like ‘mindfulness’ and spirituality. That I will stop being brave.
Doing something new every year, preferably something that scares the living daylights out of me, is how I measure the success and the passing of a year. Skydiving, adventure racing, marathons, stand-up, acting all came out of the drive to be something other than ordinary. And to celebrate being child-free and irrational.
But along with my cheeks (facial and arse) my courage seems to be sinking in direct proportion to my advancing age. This year I chickened out of doing the FronteraFest Short Fringe, one of my favorite venues for performing. (Why do we say ‘chickened out’? I won’t bother researching, safe in the knowledge that my husband will send me links to both Wikipedia and Snopes). On the good side, I did see this fearfulness coming and have taken a few steps towards saying Yes to some things that I will undoubtedly fail at. But that’s another half-written blog. Currently titled ‘Fuck No’.