Native Writes: Body paranoia raises its head


This has been a learning time for me.

Growing older does not always mean growing wiser. Usually, it means body paranoia.

I no longer look in the mirror when I get out of the bath. Like the fella on the TV rental car commercial, my hair is deciding once again on shades of gray.

Not the book. The book had excitement.

I envy the women whose hair is one solid shade of white. My aunt’s was and she had her beautician add a light tint of lilac for interest.

Only after her death did I learn she had her hair lightened before it was tinted.

It reminds me of the old Japanese guy who believed “Americans” were crazy.

“First you make it hot, then you add ice to make it cold, then you add lemon to make it sour, then you add sugar to make it sweet… You are crazy.”

We do the same with coffee, so there! If he were still among the living, I would take him to a Starbuck’s.

My mom’s mom used to warn me that eating standing up would make my feet big. She forgot to tell me that sometimes it stops midway.

I hate to eat standing up, but have done so, I guess just enough to deal with where it ends up.

As I read the news daily online and in the one metro paper I have delivered, I learn that the world around me still struggles with the role “ladies” should play and the way we should behave, up to and including the way we should sit. Nicely, with legs crossed at the ankles. I have also learned that well-behaved women do not effect great change.

Until I was a young adult, I never thought much about it, but then a “grand awakening” occurred and I burned my bra to express my dismay that the United States still needed an equal rights amendment. That was 1972. Things have since become more equal in a piecemeal fashion.

Small city life doesn’t lay bare the issues, as the social structure is long accepted and part of the wall of life.

I was thrilled when the first woman was elected to the Board of County Commissioners and even more excited when a female joined the City Council. Women were finding their places.

Society still isn’t equal and the latest inequity is in the world of work, where women make at least 10 cents on a dollar less than men in the same occupations.

I need my bra due to the fact that my body has succumbed to the law of gravity.

As one grows older, the law of gravity is inescapable unless one has money and can have the sagging surgically lifted.

TV ads show places where procedures can change that and they even offer to do one area for free, while showing a body with hips spilling over underpants.

Great pitch. They give you one half and then everything else is out of proportion.

My aunt bought a machine that was supposed to equally remove fat from belly and buttocks. It essentially beat the heck out of the bulges, which still remained.

It went the way of my exercycle. It was given away and I was grateful someone wanted it.

Riding a bike is more fun on the streets. I have scars to prove it.

More of my scars are from life than trying new procedures to improve my frame.

I broke my left wrist going out for the newspaper and my left leg from stepping over a snow berm onto black ice beyond. Both in front of my home.

I could have said I was skiing, but it didn’t happen that way.

Powdering my cheeks to cover age spots, I just try to keep my powder dry.

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