That’s Just The Way It Is…
I recently drove over to my daughter and son-in-law’s to pick up my grandkids for the day. They were waiting for me in the driveway, jumping up and down with excitement. As I opened my car door and prepared to exit my vehicle, my six-year-old granddaughter greeted me bent over and using a stick as a cane, “Hi!” she said, “I’m Gaga Pam and I have a bad back!”
I had to laugh; it was funny. But I chided her by replying, “Hey now Missy! I have TWO bad knees, not a bad back! Your Pap Steve has the bad back!”
Yeah, she totally nailed it. I am around 45 days away from turning the big 6-0. I have arthritis in my neck and shoulders as well as both knees. I am still walking around with a torn meniscus from 3.5 years ago. I have thyroid and esophagus problems that I have chosen not to treat because I am petrified of needles and don’t like having blood drawn.
I stopped dying my hair three years ago and was hoping for an immediate head of glorious gray hair. You don’t always get what you wish for – all I have is a huge patch of gray in the middle of my forehead.
I have wrinkles and bags and dark circles under my eyes. I feel like the Little Mermaid, I have drawers full of creams and lotions and probably potions. I have pills galore. Thingamabobs? I’ve got them and I keep buying more. (But I end up not using most of them…)
My daily Facebook Memories that pop up in my newsfeed is my friend and my foe. I see photos from 11 years ago when I weighed 113 pounds. I don’t see any wrinkles. The photos depict me jumping and running and being carefree – and well… younger! Nowadays, I get on the floor to play with the kids, and I struggle for 5 minutes to pull myself back up. I get cranky when the neighbors crank up their music, Jeeps and ATVs past nine o’clock. In my defense, they do this until sometimes after 2:00 am. I have never been an early riser, I loved to sleep in but now, like clockwork, I wake up before 6:00 am every.single.morning.
My two oldest grandkids recently loudly exclaimed in the bathroom of a restaurant, “Oh my Gaga, what big panties you have! Why are your panties so big?” I could hear snickering from other patrons awaiting their turn to use the facilities as I replied, “Well girls, I guess it’s because I have a big old butt.” More outside snickering occurred and when we exited the stall, I felt 3 pairs of eyes focusing on my derriere. They didn’t deny that I had a big old butt. And now I make the older kids use their own stall in the bathrooms.
So, yes, I am getting old. But I am not going without a fight. My body may think that it’s time to be put out to pasture, but my mind says, “Hold on there, Nelly. Not so fast. I still want to have some fun.” Body says I’m 90 years old, mind says that I am 10. Who will win this epic battle?
I still like to wear crazy socks adorned with sloths in Santa Hats or birds or Harry Potter. My attire consists mainly of t-shirts with humorous sayings and cartoon characters. I am typing this story while sitting cross-legged on my chair and wearing a Goofy tee. When my knees aren’t giving me fits, I am bouncing on the trampoline with the kids and looking for Bigfoot. I love to play with Monster Trucks and get wasted on root beer floats. I still believe in fairies; aliens and I always listen for Santa’s reindeer on Christmas Eve. I just purchased a Foamo machine for the grandkids, but let’s get honest here – I really, really, really wanted to play in that foam and I did just that when my daughter hosted a Fun Day two weeks ago in celebration of the end of school and the start of summer. And yes, I did romp in that foam and slather it all over my body whilst wearing a Let The Wild Rumpus Start shirt.
Off topic, I sincerely want to thank EVERYONE for the phone calls, letters, and emails about last month’s column. I can’t stop smiling and appreciate your kind words more than you will ever know. Sorry Kevin, a lot of people like me and my column and that’s just the way it is…