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Thursday, 05 August 2010

Where Have They Gone?

By Lyn Burnstine of The Lynamber Times

There are lots of funny emails with complaints about aging, circulating among us over-the-hill folks. I think the theory must be “if we laugh at ourselves first, then we won’t be so hurt by others doing it.” (I was tempted to put a question mark there, but don’t want to be mistaken for a Valley girl with her uptalk.)

Most of the jokes have to do with body parts shifting to a new low; many are about losing things and words. All of that is annoying and maddening and frustrating, indeed. By the way, did you realize that your credit card company no longer puts your full number on your bill, so if you don’t scan it or write it down somewhere safe, you’re up the creek if you lose it?

Let’s see, where did I finally locate my number at midnight the other night? In the important papers file on the computer? No, that would be the old number of the one I lost last time! Fortunately for me, and in the interest of being able to sleep that night, it was in a hard-copy file of legal and important papers for my kids, for when — well, you know!

As I said, those signs of aging are irritating but the ones I hate the most are losses. Help! I’m losing my lips! And my eyes! And my hair! My lips have always been one of my best features and the most commented on, starting with the pervert band teacher in high school I once told you about – really middle school, if we’d had one.

But where are my lips going? And where will they end up? There’s no line at all on the bottom edge anymore, and if I follow my natural line on the top lip with a lip liner, it looks like I’m perpetually sneering.

I can only wear the paint-on-stiff-as-glue kind now; the creamy ones creep down my wrinkles on the lower one, and up my wrinkles on the upper, till I look like a damn red-and-white-striped candy cane!

Then there’s the issue of the eyes. As a little tot, I had big brown eyes. They stuck coke bottle bottom glasses on them when I was seven which reduced their size by a third. By the time I got contacts at nearly 50, my eyelids were going into a decline, but finally, after 40 years, I was getting compliments by people (mostly men), but not my ever-tactful sister who said “I don’t know why you wear those things; they make you squint all the time, and it makes your eyes look smaller.”

Then a dozen years ago, I got rid of the bottle bottoms with cataract removals and implants, so I only need glasses now for distance and outdoors. That would have been wonderful, if by then my eyes weren’t being swallowed up by rolls of plump tissue – top and bottom.

I eventually figured out why everyone liked my black-rimmed glasses when I got them – they cover up the bags! And as for Preparation H for bags under your eyes? It may work in Hollywood, but it doesn’t work in Poughkeepsie.

Lastly, we come to the hair. Men, you are not alone. Women may not get as bald as men, but every elderly woman I know complains about how thin her hair is becoming. Vanity aside, there’s the newly-acquired concern about sunburn on your scalp. Now, besides sunglasses, I have to carry a hat? I’ve never looked good in a hat, of any shape or form.

I could go on, about boobs and butts dropping, noses and ears growing at an alarming rate, but I won’t. I just want my lips back. Not that I had any particular use in mind, just that I miss them!

[INVITATION: All elders, 50 and older, are welcome to submit stories for this blog. They can be fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, etc. Instructions for submitting are here.]

Posted by Ronni Bennett at 05:30 AM | Permalink | Email this post


Lyn, you said it all -- described me to a "T" -- And the two things that are the most disturbing are the disappearing eyes and lips and the wrinkles surrounding the lips. Never mind that my body seems to be morphing into a ball with limbs and a head attached. The interesting thing is I'm far more "okay" with my appearance today than I was in my youth. Age does have its advantages!

Lyn, I've thought about getting rid of my contacts and going back to glasses JUST to hide the bags under my eyes. But the glasses can't hide any of the other problems so I may just not wear any eyesight enhancement at all. That way when I look in the mirror my bad eyesight will make me think I look better than I do.

I have a very friendly bathroom mirror. What a shock when I see pictures!
Thanks for your responses, Lois and Marcia.

I find getting older is an adventure - good, bad and always
surprising. Thanks Lyn for pointing out some of the happenings. Great story.

Thanks for the welcome lip service.

I use Thicker, Fuller Hair that I order from Amazon. It's only temporary but it does its job.

Thanks for the confirming responses--that I am not alone! And Elaine, I'll look into those products. Good to know.

Lyn - I needed that just now esp. after the Alsheimer postings. Oye Vay is all I can say for at age 67 - I am ok so long as I don't look to closely in the mirror. Hair cut so short ala Jamie Lee Curtis and body so round ala Ring Dings....I am just happy to be able to get out of bed each day and write notes to you and Ronni Bennett.

Good for you, Sheila, for having a cheerful outlook. That is the name of the game, isn't it? At least we can have good chuckles with each other on here now and then. :)

I was trying on a lovely blue jacket at Winners when I spied a women reflected in another mirror trying on one just like it, only she had white hair. Guess what?

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