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Thursday, July 27, 2006

Ageing Gracefully


One entry found for age.

Main Entry: age
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): aged; ag·ing or age·ing
intransitive verb
1 : to become old : show the effects or the characteristics of increasing age
2 : to acquire a desirable quality (as mellowness or ripeness) by standing undisturbed for some time [letting cheese age]
transitive verb
1 : to cause to become old
2 : to bring to a state fit for use or to maturity

- ag·er /'A-j&r/ noun


I turn 48 in four months. And every time I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror - not the times I have to go and look as part of maintenance or presentation - I am taken aback. When did I become an old woman? I don't feel like an old woman and there are those around me who will gladly tell you that I certainly don't act like one!

intransitively speaking:

1 : to become old : show the effects or the characteristics of increasing age

I don't think I look 47 mind you, but I do see things that weren't there five, four, even two years ago. Or I see what isn't there that was there just a year ago. Like my hair! I of the red thick curls am now I of the red thin waves. It's not just men that suffer from male pattern baldness as I have discovered. And guys, you may hate that your pate shines through but it's still socially acceptable for you to go down that route. The last time I had my hair cut, my hairdresser (what an odd word that is), my hair stylist (nope that doesn't fit someone like me either), the guy who has cut my hair for 15 years now (that's better) actually tried to give me a comb-over!!! He says, as he's running his fingers through my hair (yes the only one who has done that for a long time) with a worried look, have you ever thought of having more of a side parting? I who have hair that I just let fall where it feels like it. Sadly it's doing that mostly down the drainhole in my bathtub.

And my body. Everything seems to be conspiring to end up as ankle ruffs. I'm convinced I'll end up with a slim upper body and localised ankle to knee obesity. Even my face is falling down. OK not quite to my knees but there is a definite lack of elasticity going on facially. I hear that come menopause, which isn't too far away, I may even start to sprout a fine set of whiskers. At this point I pause to consider transplanting those onto the crown of my head.

2 : to acquire a desirable quality (as mellowness or ripeness) by standing undisturbed for some time [letting cheese age]

Or rather [letting (me) age]. I've decided I want to be quintessentially cheesey. So that I acquire this desirable quality of mellowness or ripeness as defined by Merriam-Webster. No wait, I'm supposed to get that way by standing undisturbed? An unreasonable and unacceptable trade off methinks.

Oh well, lets try this transitively:

1 : to cause to become old

Oh my, you know who you are!

2 : to bring to a state fit for use or to maturity

Aaaaah I think we're getting somewhere now. I do believe I'm now in a state fit for use. Hell abuse even if we can get some fun out of it somewhere. 'To bring to maturity' sounds so nice and respectful. Is it time to buy blouses that can button up to my chin, trade in my four-inch heels for 'sensible' shoes, buy bras sans all the lace, invest in a little more fabric yardage when I go for my next knicker purchase, give in to a side parting, generally speaking just grow old gracefully?

Hell no, there's way too much life left in this dame yet and I mean to squeeze this life of mine for all it has left. Even if I end up bald and with thick ankles.


Sugar said...

I love this, it's so warm and quirky and so true..you sound like you are 'maturing' beautifully, I only hope to go the same route! x

Fiona said...

Sugar! Thank you so much for visiting and commenting :). I still don't know where the last 10 years have gone.

Steve said...

My 'homemade' definition of 'old age' is:

"not wanting to change -
not seeking novelty -
living the "routine" life."

When you dream or talk more about the past, than you do the future...then you are getting old. Even if my hair falls out, I don't want to do that!

DG said...

Without a doubt. Excellent post.

Fiona said...

Thank you DG, muchly :)

And Steve, I think that whole talking about the past is just the natural circle of life. Knowing a lot of 'aged' people it just seems that forward holds less joy than the past for them, especially with health issues, and there's certainly a lot less of it. Seems that from a certain point the tape rewinds and plays, and I would never deny anyone comfort in what has been.

I hope that when I come to rewind and replay, the memories warm my soul. For it is not about being here, it is about what I leave behind. And everyday I strive to leave a little more goodness.

Steve said...

I hope so too! :)

kj said...

Ah, 47, how ever did we get here? Could 48 really be around the corner? Why I remember my parents in their forties.... and yet here I am. And I look in the mirror and say ....nope I'll never look 18 again.... but then I don't ever want to be 18 again.... I've earned every one of those lines, and imperfections, and I while I may not like them, I don't see them, unless I look.... and if I keep busy with things far more important.... then I don't have time to dwell on imperfections....I can instead see the looks in my student's faces, when they have finally mastered a difficult concept.... the look at a project well done (be it a chopped up tree, a shed painted in the Katrina zone, or the last patient of the day walking away with medicines for her family in Honduras, or a thousand tomatoes picked and washed for charity) or just the sight of my children growing up. No, a few lines is worth the price of not being stuck at 18 for forever.....

Thanks for stopping by today.


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