When I was younger I remember wanting to be in my late twenties or early thirties. I remember thinking people have established themselves by then. They can drink (legally!), they likely have a college degree and a career, they have probably moved out, and they may be in love potentially with a family. I thought that age range was great since I witnessed it in my much older siblings. I even remember them telling me to enjoy high school and etc. while I could. In hindsight I should have listened to them! However, I will say I was right on in my thinking. The mid-twenties and early thirties were, in fact, the best years of my life (so far).
And then, one day not too long ago I turned 39 and I decided to be more of a “hands-free momma”. So instead of being on my phone while waiting for the kids to be released from school I decided to look around at my surroundings. That lasted a short awhile and then there was not much else to look at. So I pulled the rearview mirror towards me and decided to do something I never do: REALLY LOOK AT MYSELF. I probably should have stuck to nature for there, right in front of my very own eyes was IT, the much dreaded reality of AGING. What the hell happened to me?! This sparked not only a quick view of my head but I decided an intervention was needed: I was going to do a top-to-bottom analysis of myself.
I have decided to share this analysis with you:
- The hair (on my head.). The very first thing I noticed in that mirror was a GRAY hair. There was only one was it was there BLARRING at me. Keep in mind that I never touched the color of my hair until my mid-twenties and then it was only for fun. Since then I have only highlighted my hair FOR FUN. At least highlights are a permanent fix if I do them FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE. The other problem with my hair is that I don’t think it is growing. Is this why old people have short hair? I swear it should be growing more with my pregnancy but I fear it is not. I throw my hands up in the air on this one!
- The hair (on my face). The second thing I noticed was my facial hair. I have always had my eyebrows waxed because I simply can’t shape them by myself. I have always had a hair trimmer for my “stache” because I did not feel it was worth the cost of waxing. However, the rest of my face I have not paid attention to because I am naturally a bleached blonde so my facial hair is extremely blonde and hey, when you slop on your makeup in a rush you don’t have time to notice that your entire face is covered in peach fuzz! I immediately had flashbacks to living in Spain and when the fresh chickens arrived to cook them we noticed the hair on their skin so we turned on the gas burner and we burned all the hair off those babies! While I realized that I could not set a flame to my face I had another option. So, right then and there in the school parking lot I whipped out my hair trimmer and removed every morsel of hair on my face. The Mom in the car next to me looked at my kind of funny but I just smiled and continued. By the time I was done I was thinking to donate it to locks of love. The thought also crossed my mind that if I knew someone with a hamster this little pile would make a nice comfy bed. Well, anyways, after it was done my skin was smooth. That was a month ago and I have had no problems since then.
- The wrinkles. This is probably the most depressing thing I noticed. OMG, I have wrinkles! And not just around my eyes but also on my forehead. How could this be? Where did they come from? I do three masks a week and a professional facial every few months. How could I not notice this? Well, somehow those lines escaped me. Since then I have been trying other means to help reduce them but I don’t know if they are working. I am going to pray that God preserves me from MORE wrinkles for AS LONG AS POSSIBLE.
- The spots. I have seen these guys. They have been staring at me since my first pregnancy. They don’t bother me much anymore only because I had the mask of pregnancy and IT WAS BAD. And I remember my Doctor saying it may never go away. It did go away but it took a long time. So the spots, in between pregnancies I try to do what I can do them.
- The chin. My Mom said that she thinks I am having a girl because I have a double chin and she has never seen a double chin on me before. Nice! So my new goal to resolve this problem is to talk even more, eat less, and hope for the best!
- The space between my neck and my shoulders. So if I were wearing a strapless top one may think I was a body builder by looking at that space. Don’t get excited because you know what it is? STRESS. Oh yes, yes it is. I have all my stress right there all tangled up in knots and making me look like a beast! People think I go for massages for relaxation; HELL-TO-THE-NO. I go looking for a sumo wrestler massage therapist who will beat the crap out of my knots. So here’s to regular massages and potentially giving up all stress. LOL. Regarding giving up all stress – unless I donate my children (even the adult one in his 30s!) to a family member this is IMPOSSIBLE. So I will put my big girl panties on and deal with it.
- My arms. Flap city. Like so many things this can only be tackled with that one dreaded “E” word: EXERCISE. If the “E” word is not executed regularly I fear it will be flap city 24/7 365 FOREVER.
- My elbow. There is new skin there. It hangs. It looks like a chicken. I throw my hands up in the air on this one too!
- My hands and fingers. My hands have wrinkles! Dang it, I was always told to use hand lotion and never did it. UGH! My fingers are beginning to look like I have arthritis. My pinky is separating from the flock for some unknown reason. OMG I have seen this happen to my relatives. Sucks to be me. Additionally, every so often a hair, A BLACK HAIR, will appear on my hand. Gross. Pluck that baby and onward we go!
- The space between my chest and my armpits. What is that? A third boob? And yes, for those of you who don’t know those exist but alas it is not a third boob. I don’t know what the heck it is but I fear it will NEVER go away. Oh well.
- The “girls”. I have to respect this one. My girls have been through a lot. They have blossomed with pregnancy and then shrunken to the lowest depths. They have done this multiple times. They have also been tortured by my nursing children for probably five years of which one of those years was times two and not counted in that equation. So, with all of this said, what can I say about the girls? I love you! Thank you! And God made the creators of push up bras that we can wear 24/7 so Ladies, it’s all good. I’ve got your back!
- My waist. What waist? PFT. Nuff said there. However, I will share a chuckle with you. I went for my yearly physical last year before I was pregnant and my Doctor told me I had a hernia. I was like, what? How do you know that? She told me that if I ever looked at my belly button and felt it I would see and feel it. So I looked and alas, it was there! Dang. That stinks. The worse part was when I told my husband he already knew about it! Note to self: as painful as it may be LOOK at yourself more often girl!
- My belly. I am speechless. I am currently pregnant. Right now I take photos of half my stomach. Why? Because the top 64% of it is perfectly round and reflective of pregnancy. The other 36%., however, looks like something on Botched! Basically, a tummy tuck gone all wrong. It hangs there, lingering, a sad muffin top waiting for the next weeks of pregnancy to pull her up. Hopefully it will! When I am not pregnant I have to say my belly has amazed me. Though flappy and full of stretch marks it has done amazing things! The last two post-partum diets I have done –without sit-ups and etc.- have proven to me that regardless of the number of births I have it can go back to a decent size. I can hang with the best of those 20 year olds that don’t have any kids, wear cute little tops with their tummy there for all the world to see. So I am proud of my tummy. And, she knows that SPANX and girdles (even wearing TWO at one time) are our BFFS!
- My hips. In 22 weeks, God-willing, I will birth my 9th child. Like the tatas, I must respect the hips. They will bring forth life a-gain! And, thanks to their size, if I ever need to carry all nine children on my hips I can so go me! Go hippies! You gals rock!
- The “birthing canal”. A moment of silence, please… Two words: INCONTINENCE FOR-EVER. One financial tip: BUY STOCK IN PANTYLINERS. Heck, buy stock in maxi-pads too.
- “Brother ass”. I will confess that I have always had junk in the trunk, even as a super skinny teenager. And as the years have passed by and the weight has crept on at least my body knows where to gain. Let’s face I don’t ever look at myself naked (clearly) so I don’t really care about the fact that there’s cellulite there. What I do care about is that there is something happening – sideways – gravity has shifted and my bum is beginning to look like flat pancakes. While my hips and muffin top may appreciate their new found friends, I do not. But, when all else fails God also created the genius who made BUTT PADS which pair very well with the SPANX or girdles.
- My thighs. Let’s go back to the chicken. Yeah, my thighs look like chicken thighs – all “dimply” and all. I am not sure what else to tell you. “It is what it is!”
- My knees, the rest of my legs and my ankles. They have all decided to blend together into one big, happy family. You can no longer tell where my knees are for there is a straight line from my thighs to my knees to my calves to my ankles. The only change that occurs is at the very end of pregnancy my ankles swell and pop out of the sides of this long, straight line of a leg. Long shirts, leggings and knee high boots seem to separate the family and put everyone in their potential places.
- My feet. My poor feet. For the longest time now the bottom of my feet have been a WRECK. No lie. It’s disgusting. I blame it on my pregnancies and my weight gain. People may also think that I go to get pedicures for my toes to look cute. NO. That is an added bonus but for me I actually go so they can scrub the heck out of my feet. When they are done there is enough dead skin on the floor to likely build one small person. NO JOKE. Worst part is that I could go every two weeks and the result would be the same. YUCK.
- Last but not least, my mind. I’ve pretty much lost it (in case you couldn’t tell!).
So all the joking aside, and having never understood why people get so upset about aging, I can finally say that I get them. I may not be happy about aging but I am OK with it, really I am. I have always cared more about what I look like on the inside anyways. I have always placed my soul first. But, thanks to all of the people over the years who have helped me look and feel good, I thank them! My hair stylist, my Esthetician, my Massage Therapists, THANK YOU! I also have to give a SPECIAL SHOUT out to my hubby and my babysitters because without them I would not be able to pamper myself! And then to all of the things that help me look and feel good despite my weight gain and pregnancies, all hail to them: makeup, beauty and hair products, girdles, jewelry, good designers, and etc. THANK YOU! I heart you!
Next year I will turn 40 and for the first time ever I am actually going to throw myself a party! I have been throwing parties for my hubby and kids for over ten years. It is my turn, just this once! I plan to make it NOT a “fabulous at 40” party; heck it may be a “fat, flabby and 40 party”! But one thing is for sure, wrinkles, stretch marks, and all; I will be celebrating my four decades ALIVE because after all aging is something that not all people have the privilege of experiencing!