While I’m on the elliptical at the gym I listen to my choir repertoire, killing two birds with one stone – it helps the time pass and I get to listen to my songs in the vague hope that one day I might stop being the one who always gets the harmony wrong.
In all it lasts a little under 40 minutes, and I put it on shuffle because that’s just the kind of crazy, spontaneous way I live my life.
It seems that the shuffle, though, isn’t that random, because it always ends on a song called ‘All My Trials’. It’s a Bahamian spiritual and a hauntingly beautiful song – that is, until you listen to the words, which are slit-your-throat miserable. It is, in fact, the deathbed song of a woman who welcomes the end because ‘all her trials’ will ‘soon be over’.
How fitting! There I am slogging away, all red in the face and possibly even glowing, desperately wondering if the whole terrible ordeal will ever come to an end, and suddenly on it comes, assuring me that this particular trial will soon be over. It’s like a little ray of sunshine sent to give me a final burst of strength.
My road to the gym is paved with good intentions, and we all know where that leads.
Having said that I did manage to drag myself there earlier today. I spent about half an hour on the resistance machines (is that what they’re called, because it makes me feel like I’m spearheading a robot revolution?), followed by half an hour on the elliptical.
It was hard work and as long as I remembered to suck in my stomach before looking in the mirror I felt quite pleased with myself.
While I slogged away there were a bunch of older (well, older than me) ladies pottering around in a nice gentle aerobics class. They seemed to be having a pleasant time and I certainly enjoyed the addition of their soundtrack to my own workout.
Coincidentally their class ended at the same time as I finished and together we walked out of the gym where we sat and changed our shoes in the leisure centre’s main change area.
At that point I realized that I had walked out, red in the face and sweaty, in the company of a bunch of much older women who hadn’t even smudged their make-up. “They’re not with me,” I wanted to scream, “I worked really hard!”
When I go to the gym I want recognition and admiration, not a bunch of cheerful, relaxed seniors making me look like a pansy.
Today hubby finally lands on the big five-oh, a spot where I have already been sitting for a full 7 months. Yes, I married a younger man; a toyboy if you will.
While he’s having his own issues around turning 50, I think it’s important to remember that this is much more stressful for me. Yesterday, married to a man in his 40s, I was (the slightly older) half of a much younger couple. Today we’re both firmly entrenched in our second half a century and I’m left wondering where the time went. I demand a recount!
Hubby wanted a membership to the Bacon of the Month Club for his birthday. Seriously? Maybe thirty years ago! At our age I feel such a gift might be construed as conspiracy to commit murder. I’m not sure, but I think I may have laughed in his face, but either way I decided to opt for something safer.
So, how are we celebrating? Well I’m taking him out to lunch (which at our age we are most of the time anyway), and then, once the boys get home from school he has us pencilled in for a full hour of birthday festivities before he goes curling. Just enough time to eat some bacon laden snacks and open some non-bacon related gifts.
And then tomorrow we dig out the prunes and metameucil.
Why is it so easy to write for strangers and so intimidating to think that someone I know might read this blog?
Proper bloggers, I’m led to believe, promote their blogs and invite people they know to read them, while, personally I’ve found anonymity to be a very comfortable place. Still, in an uncharacteristically reckless moment I decided to stop acting like a crazy person and I have linked this blog to facebook.
So, if you know me and you’re reading this for the first time, I’ll explain that it’s really just the rantings of a confused, middle aged stay-at-home Mum in the process of losing her raison d’etre. You’ll notice that I’ve given the children an odd assortment of pseudonyms – Roxy, Sunny Jim and Hoss – and I’ve refrained from using hubby’s name. I only write things I would be happy to say to their faces, but for some reason posting it on the internet almost seems … I don’t know, public. Funny that!
Check out the About Me page which, despite being about 2 years out of date, will at least explain my Empty Nesting Project.
And this seems like a good time to review how things are going…
- Career – still messing around with a part-time freelance business and submitting to any excuse I can find to avoid working. I’m fairly sure my productivity would be improved by the addition of a scary boss, but on the other hand I’m probably too set in my ways to be told what to do by some jumped up middle manager (see, I’m getting annoyed just thinking about it).
- Choir – awesome. I love it, but sadly it only accounts for about two hours a week. On a side note, how fabulous is it to be able to sing at the top of my voice without anyone telling me to shut up? And then twice a year I get to make my nearest and dearest come to my concert after which they are forced to feign admiration.
- Hot yoga – sadly that went by the wayside when my doctor pointed out that it probably wasn’t helping the hot flashes. If I ever resume control of my hormones maybe I’ll start again.
- Swimming – sadly that went by the wayside when I got really old and developed a shoulder injury. I don’t think I’m likely to get less old, but I would still like to take it up again.
- Health and wellness – I confess that I am getting fatter and lazier by the day. Apparently even my pharmacist is alarmed.
In short, I still haven’t managed to define precisely who I want to be for the next 40 years (I figure after 90 it shouldn’t much matter anymore). All I’m certain of so far is that I don’t want to spend decades sitting watching Big Bang reruns; I’m leaning, instead, toward backpacking round India, volunteering overseas, owning a house in England and engaging in various other rather costly activities.
What I don’t have is a plan for is how I’m going to fund all this. Still, that’s a minor detail
For the most part I feel pretty good about the way I look after myself. There’s certainly room for improvement but I eat whole grains and vegetables (when I have time between mouthfuls of chocolate), walk the dog every day and pop by the gym from time to time.
Not bad, I thought, but apparently my pharmacist would beg to differ.
I went in quite innocently to refill an ongoing prescription and when she asked if I would be okay to do a quick health assessment I thought “sure, why not?”.
I’ll tell you why not … I managed to fail every question, even though I was under the impression that there are no wrong answers and now the pharmacist has set me a bunch of goals all of which revolve around refraining from eating anything I might want to, and spending all day every day rushing around aerobically.
At the end of the session she cheerily announced that she would check in with me next time I go in to see how I’m getting on with my goals. Great – now I can never go into the drugstore ever again!