Older and Wiser. But Mostly Just Older

In my mind and so long as I avoid the mirror, I’ll always be in my mid-20s. However, there are some cold, hard facts that lately have aggressively slapped me in the face to let me know that I’m no longer a carefree 20something with plenty of years to invest wisely for retirement. Nay, I am a full-blown adult that is aging rapidly both in body and in spirit.

On my birthday, I decided it would be a fun activity to count the ways in which I am aging as another year ticks by. Excuse me while I go sob into my glass of celebratory champagne…

1. Coupons are life: If I don’t have a coup, I ain’t buying it. I’ve reached the age while I’m financially able to pay full retail but refuse to on principle. Recently, I was at JoAnn Fabrics and I had a 50% off one item coupon. I literally bought two bottles of acrylic paint that were 99 cents apiece. What do you think I did? I whipped out that JoFab coup right there and I saved myself 50 cents. I told the cashier that I couldn’t walk out of that store and not use the coupon. If I hadn’t, that lost 50 cents would have driven me to insanity in tell-tale heart fashion.
2. My body: I won’t go into specific details about how much I’ve changed. Mostly because if I have to look at one more pre-breastfeeding picture of myself I may start sobbing uncontrollably and never stop. No, I’m talking about the fact that I am feeling old. I am no spring chicken anymore. Rough-housing with the kids makes me feel sore and winded at times. Even sitting on the floor with them for an extended period makes me grab my lower pack and wince like I’m auditioning for an Icy Hot commercial.

Facebook memories reminded me of this gem from eight years ago back when I had birthday parties at bars with all-you-can-drink wristband deals.

3. Gray hairs: these mother f’ers are popping up everywhere. I knew this was something that could eventually happen but I didn’t realize just how soon. One day, while washing my hair I looked down at my hand in horror when I realized a silvery hair was mixed in amongst the brown ones. A few others have made the occasional appearance and it’s only a matter of time I fear before I’m visiting the salon every six weeks.
4. On Being a Curmudgeonn: The other day I almost wrote a letter to the customer service department for Bounty Paper Towels because I was finding that occasionally the paper towels on the roll weren’t perforated where they were supposed to be causing me to use a wasteful two foot-long sheet. Dear God, save me. I am in a place where I think it’s a good use of my time to write an email about the inadequate perforation of paper towels. A few days after I talked myself off the ledge and did not write the letter, Joe mentioned it and I was delighted that he, too, had noticed and was annoyed. Then I realized he’s five years older than I am and this shared grievance was only further confirmation of my aging.

A normal sheet compared to one of the improperly perforated sheets. C’mon!! This is ridiculous, right?? And it happens every few sheets. And no, before you ask, this is not a “select-a-size” roll.

5 . The Young Kids These Days: I groan if I meet anyone that was born in the 90s. How is that even possible? I am ancient by comparison. Also, who is Cardi B? I honestly didn’t know who Cardi B was until she made an appearance  in the Alexa Super Bowl ad. Ok, who am I kidding. I still not sure I know who she is or what she does. Slang? Current music? I am so not up to date. Listen, I still get incredibly excited whenever I hear Usher’s “YEAH” come on. Side note, for this to magically “come on” you have to be listening to LITE FM. #favoritestationalways

The gifts you get from well-meaning friends because they know you are so out of touch. 

6. May I See Your ID? You know you are starting to really get old when you make awkward mom jokes when someone asks to see your ID. You know the “Oh you can check my ID any time you want to!” (insert obnoxious giggle here) while the 22-year old cashier looks at you and your multiple bottles of $10 wine in mild annoyance. Literally I did this nonstop at the tables in Vegas. IT IS THE JOB OF THE DEALERS TO CHECK EVERYONE’S ID. Unless I was hooked up to an oxygen tank and had a walker with tennis balls on the ends of the legs, they were going to check IDs. Did this stop me from making the same joke every single time? No. I couldn’t help myself as corny jokes are another side effect of aging.
7. Digestive Issues: Prior to our Vegas trip I sent out a group text with a picture of Tylenol, Gas-X, Tums, and band-aids and said “Don’t worry! I got the essentials!” Crickets. No one else was concerning themselves with these things because apparently as the oldest one in the group I’m the only one that has to look at a plate of loaded nachos and start having crippling gas pains.
8. Metabolism: This is an actual lunch that I packed myself when I first started working at my first job out of college: A PB&J sandwich, baggie of chips, Hostess chocolate cupcake, and a Coke heavy. This was probably a combination of living in the Midwest and being young enough that housing 1500 calories on a single meal had zero fallout. As the years have ticked by the weight clings on a little harder. Merely glancing at a cheese platter causing my problem areas to balloon and stretch the limits of my jeans’ zipper so that the teeth of it are clinging together for dear life.  Sigh, so much to my chagrin I have to be more thoughtful about the food I consume. Usually. Except on holidays. Or weekends. Or when I have a bad day.

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