As moms, when our children are little, there was no boo boo we couldn’t fix. Be it with a kiss, a bandaid, a little washing, an ice cream cone, a quarter, the list goes on and on. There comes a time in a mom’s life when she realizes “Hey, I cannot fix this kid’s boo boos anymore.” When she realizes that…well, it’s not an easy moment. Her child is not a child anymore, but an adult, or very near adulthood. Some of the boo boos she used to fix were skinned knees, loose teeth, a bump on the ole noggin, a fever, the list goes on and on. Now, the boo boos are a bit more complex than that, and there is a point in life when she realizes that no matter what she does, the boo boos of her now grown child can be fixed by nobody else but that child. Her child could be at the point of losing everything. At that point a decision must be made. Does she keeping trying to “fix” it, especially if that means the “fixing” may be enabling? Or does she finally say enough? Making the decision to say enough is so difficult for a mom. So very difficult. Telling her child “I am done….nobody can fix you but you.” is possibly the hardest thing a mom can say. Sitting and waiting to see if the child decides he/she is worth fixing him or herself is not easy either. But she does, and hopes for the best and tells herself that sometimes tough love is what is necessary to get her child to see the light, even though it is killing her inside and she cries because she just wants her child to be ok again. She wants those boo boos fixed.
It’s finally dawning on me….this is the year I turn 60. Yes….60. It wasn’t that long ago (or so it seems) that I couldn’t have imagined reaching the age of 20 because it seemed like a lifetime away. I remember when my grandparents were 60. I remember when my parents were 60. My friends and I have often had the “We can’t believe we’ll be 60” discussion. It’s a little weird, because on one hand, while 60 may not sound so old…on the other hand, it’s like, uggh 60. So, here are some ponderings on turning 60.
I should have listened to my mother more and not easily dismissed certain things she would tell me about getting older. She was just trying to prepare me for becoming older, and I brushed it all off. For instance: As a woman becomes older, she will get whiskers. True. Keep your tweezers handy at all times. As a woman becomes older, she won’t need to shave her legs as often. True. You might think this is because the leg hair quits growing, but I have found that is not the case. It turns grey…just like the hair on top of your head. Oh, let’s touch on the grey hair. Sure, you might think it won’t happen, or you might just decide to color your hair. Well….at some point, you look in the mirror and realize you are going to look like a skunk if you keep coloring, as fast as that grey is coming in. Do yourselves a favor, and just let it turn grey…it’s a lot cheaper that way. Which leads me to more thoughts on the hair.
Mother said as a woman gets older, she should keep her hair shorter. It will make her look younger. True…the weight of the long hair pulls your wrinkles down. Oh, and don’t think wrinkles won’t happen…I already have my mother’s neck. But I also have her shoulders, which still look pretty young. Which leads me to skin.
Mother always told us girls to never use soap on our face. She said soap would dry up our skin and make it look older faster. Well, that was one thing we took to heart, and all of us girls have really nice skin. (Sometimes, it pays off to listen to your mother.)
Weight….yes, weight gain happens. The metabolism changes in the body. You have to work harder to keep your weight down…as it just seems to come out of nowhere. Good gravy, this is the biggest I’ve ever been, with the exception of being 40 weeks pregnant carrying a 10 lb baby. Mother would always do what she called hip rolls at night…every night she would do these hip rolls before she went to bed…they kept her arse from getting wide she said. Guess what I’m going to start doing? Yup…should have listened to mother.
Aches and pains…yup…got those. My knees sometimes get stuck. My hips go out more than I do.
Teeth…I still have most of my teeth. My folks had dentures for as long as I can remember, and while they did some pretty cool stuff with those false teeth, I would really prefer to keep mine. I have a terrible dental phobia….I’d rather give birth to triplets with no medication. Which reminds me of the fact that there’s a reason we have children when we are younger. My almost 60 year old body could not take that…nor would I have the patience or the energy to be chasing around tiny tots all day long at this age. I’d be like a zombie….although…I find zombies very cool. Hmmmm.
But on a more serious note….there is one thing that just hangs in the back of my mind. I’m really healthy….aside from glaucoma and a thyroid problem, a numb hand and the occasional aches and pains that “are part of this age” (as my doctor says). But…there’s one thing. I’m turning 60….my mother was 60 once. She died at 67. I wish she were still around to tell me more stuff about when a woman gets older. Maybe I’d not dismiss it as easily.
The year of turning 60. I hope we all deal with it gracefully and well. Because not so long ago…we couldn’t imagine being this age.