Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Feeling it

The forties are such a paradoxical time. I've seen this as a time when so many people truly come into their own -- mentally, emotionally, socially, professionally, and for the fortunate, financially. At the same time, it's when our bodies begin to remind us that we're starting to lose it. I've never felt this confident and at home with myself. (For people who've read my blog for awhile, my personal insecurities when I was younger were astounding. As neurotic as I am now, this is practically nothing.)

I've also never felt so weak. I'm afraid the "good" knee no longer deserves that adjective. I'm still limping after five days wth no trackable injury. When I had knee surgery two years ago, I was told that I'd probably have to have my right knee replaced within two years. I've been glad to prove my doctor wrong, but now I fear that my other knee might have to go into the shop for some repairs. Today, I started out the day feeling lovely in a white blouse with a border of faux pearls around the collar, and this great black skirt that has the perfect combination of tailoring where it falls in a neat straight line, but has the right amount of fullness for great flow when I move. Then I saw myself limping and realized I looked like a penguin. It's time to dig the cane out of the back of the closet for a few days. I figure as long as I leave the top hat and cigarette holder behind, I can avoid looking like The Penguin from Batman, but the waddle has got to go.
I came home tonight to find no pain relievers in the house, no aspirin, no Aleve, no Advil, nada. I decided if I have to hurt, I can just not care that I'm hurting and took a Xanax instead. I've only taken Xanax when I've had a panic attack before and didn't realize how this stuff would hit me in a normal state. My body feels like a partially set bowl of Jello, and I'm rather enjoying the feeling. I like it so much that buying Aleve is on the top of tomorrow's to do list. Anything that feels this good can't become a regular habit.

Yesterday, I went to the eye doctor because he called me himself and said that I really don't need to wait any longer for that checkup. With cataracts, a detaching retina, and a wandering eye, I truly fear losing my sight. The good news is that I only need to upgrade my prescription, and the rest is still at a manageable stage. The bad news is that going to my eye doctor is less enjoyable than going to the gynecologist. I don't have a true lazy eye, but when I get tired, either of my eyes will drift off to one side. I can control it most of the time, and I try to keep a sense of humor about it. Wherever in the room the womanchild is, I can usually say, "I've got my eye on you." I can honestly say I'm a cockeyed optimist. I can get away with harmless flirting, because I can't help having a wandering eye. I wrote a great spoof once called "She's Got Marty Feldman Eyes." Part of the checkup involved having my eyes paralyzed and dilated which was no big deal. However, I was supposed to go to a fund raiser for a law enforcement officer who's moving into politics. Somehow I didn't think it would have been kosher to show up stumbling because of the knee with nothing but pupil showing in my eyes. I just don't think the truth would have been too believable.

At the same time, I'm feeling a level of competence at work that's been a long time coming. My field has so much information and so many regulations that I've doubted my ability to master it. The last few days though have shown me just how far I've come in the last four months, and though I still need to step things up, I'm proud of what all I've done. Beginning a new career in the middle aged years isn't easy, but I am loving it. I've shown myself that I still have what it takes to take on new challenges and come out on top.

If the body will keep up with the mind and emotions and I get the pocketbook under control, I'll have it made.

7 Comments:

Blogger Lisa :-] said...

"Marty Feldman eyes..." LOL!

I've been noticing the aches and pains and "I just can't do that anymore"s. It's annoying...I've got too much to do for my body to go shithouse on me... :-]

April 05, 2006 5:46 PM  
Blogger Paula said...

I wrote a great spoof once called "She's Got Marty Feldman Eyes."

Absolutely laughed out loud.

Cynthia, this is such a GREAT entry! Beautifully, poignantly, written all the way through.

April 05, 2006 9:11 PM  
Blogger Nelle said...

My right knee has arthritis and I have been limping on and off for months now. I need physical therapy that I cannot afford to get. My doctor said the BEST non prescription meds are anti inflammatories such as NUPRIN. I found Aleve killed my stomach. I am not allowed to take these anymore with my blood thinner and my knee now has fluid as well.

April 05, 2006 9:44 PM  
Blogger Theresa Williams said...

I never was that physically active, but still it is a huge wake up call when the body starts to go out on you. It's easy at such times to descend into dark thoughts. It looks like you're dishing it out along with a fine sense of humor.

April 05, 2006 11:48 PM  
Blogger ChasingMoksha said...

I have been trying to consciously bring my mind and body together as one. So far, I have failed with the body. It is a struggle and yes indeed I feel the age. Oh do I feel the age.

April 07, 2006 3:39 AM  
Blogger gigi said...

See, Cyn, this is why I think we're twins separated at birth ~ I too have Marty Feldman eyes, and have always described them as such! And my body is falling apart, too! And I love Xanax!

I mean, what are the odds? ;D

My face is falling too, and that I cannot forgive. ;/

April 07, 2006 4:52 PM  
Blogger Gannet Girl said...

All I can say is that from my vantage point, the 50s have been much worse physically but much better mentally and emotionally.

Of course, the departing estrogen has taken with it all semblance of intellect and memory, so maybe I just have no idea.

April 08, 2006 9:40 AM  

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