Continuing On

You’ve heard me talk about the importance of family tradition.  I believe families should have rituals that they follow in some sort of pattern.  Last weekend, my family went to a corn maze- we have been doing the maze at this location for 12 years.  As we walk down the path, we look at the pictures from past mazes and talk about how fast we did them.  Competitive family- we try to beat our time from the previous year- my daughter is sort of a maze savant- (this year, Queens County Farm Museum threw us a curve ball- they made the maze longer and more difficult- so we had to readjust our expectations)

But just like families- couples and individuals should have rituals too.  My Husband and I did not really have these rituals when my daughter was younger, because we did so much as a family unit.  But we realized a few years ago that our daughter had her own life.  She no longer played soccer and softball, so our attendance was not required at games.  We were no longer needed at weekend activities- she played in a tennis tournament a few weeks ago and told us we didn’t need to come.  She has plans and she has homework and she has more homework.  The husband and I are sort of free.

So- we began a new set of traditions.  We go to the Orchid Show at the Botanic Garden, the cherry blossoms at the other garden, etc.  Last weekend we went to Open House New York (OHNY).  OHNY is where building and organizations open up their doors and give tours- these places are not often seen by the public.  We had tours of two gorgeous churches, including The Church of the Transfiguration (where PG Wodehouse got married) and Marble Collegiate (where Norman Vincent Peale was Pastor).  We also went to Center for Book Arts, where they actually lay the type for some funky books.  I can’t give a good explanation of this place though, hence why I don’t write reviews) but suffice to say it was cool, interesting and different, and I’m considering taking a class just to see how books are made the old fashioned way.

So- now that I’ve included Sunday Wrap up into  Wordy Wednesday…….

I also have started my own traditions.  I now go to the Tribeca Film Festival every year (I think you get the idea of what this is)  I go to the New Yorker Festival (which is basically an event for the editors of the New Yorker to show how intellectual they are by running panel discussions and interviews).  I find things to do on an annual basis.

Why are traditions important?

They give you something to look forward to.

I think as people get older, many have a dread that life is over.  They’ve had kids, they’ve had careers, they’ve owned houses.  They have done some of the things they set out to do.  They also realize that there might be some stuff that they never got around to doing.  That’s when the sadness creeps in.  They don’t always know what to do next- all they see is an empty calendar- days with nothing to fill them.

So you fill in the blanks.

Annual events are an easy way to start.  If I know the New Yorker Festival is the second weekend of October each year, I can jot it down.  That’s a day in the calendar that is not blank- that is something I look forward to.  (I know- half of you are thinking- OMG- she’s off on one of her scheduling tangents- you’re tired just thinking about writing something in your planner (?) for a year from now…I get it….but….)

As we get older, we need to adapt and/or change.   Yeah- I get it – change is hard.  But not changing- well, does that make things easier?

I switched to glasses this week- I didn’t want to, but I had no choice.  Accept and move on.  My daughter will be going to college in a few years and I will no longer see her on a daily basis.  Accept and move on.  Adapt to the new reality.  Live in the present.

 

 

 

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I’m too Old for That

I play this silly app, Design Home (where I get to live out my fantasy of being Joanna Gaines for 20 minutes a day) and when I was voting the other day, I noticed an interesting screen name: “I’m too old to play this game”.  Now, I’m not too old to play the game, but I thought about other things I am too old to do.

  1. Wear stilettos.  Yes, I know I look hot in them, but really, standing in heels is not something I want to do
  2. Maintain my hair in it’s natural brunette state.  Vanity has precluded me from going grey, so I have turned to the shade that has more fun.  If you knew me, you would know that blonde is the last thing I ever thought I would be.  And I’ve always been fun…
  3. Be petty.  Of course, just because I’m too old for it doesn’t mean I’m never petty.
  4. Be mad at my parents for parenting mistakes, or things they did.  It’s done.  My life is my responsibility.
  5. Care what others think of me.  Frankly, you are too old for this on the day you are born.
  6. Eat after 9pm.  Seriously, there’s logic behind the early bird special.
  7. Leave the house without a list of everything I’m supposed to do, buy or see.  And list should be in chronological order.
  8. Finish a book that I hate.  I used to have this thing about finishing every book I started- it only succeeded in making me miserable.
  9. Argue with my husband about stupid things.  It’s never worth it.
  10. Accept an invitation to something because I’m “supposed to”.  Unless I can think of a valid reason as to why I am “supposed to”.
  11. Shop at Forever 21.  I realize the name implies that I’ll always be 21, but I can’t fathom shopping at the same place my daughter does.
  12. Sit in the direct sun at the beach.  Or sit on a blanket on the sand.  I like an umbrella and a chair.  Call me a Princess.
  13. Hold on to anger.  It doesn’t mean I can’t get angry (you may have read a rant or three of mine) but it does mean I have to let it go.
  14. Hold on to sadness. Same rules apply.
  15. Pretend I am younger than I am- why bother?  What’s wrong with the age you are?
  16. Obsess about my looks.  When I say obsess, I mean constantly wondering why I don’t look the same as I did 20 years ago.  The goal is to be healthy and take care of myself.
  17. Snapchat.  Seriously- anyone over the age of 30 that says they know what snapchat is, is lying.
  18. Ski.  I know I’m not too old for this, but I just don’t like skiing.
  19. Engage is discussions about politics or religion.  No good can come from this.  Everyone is entitles to their own opinion.
  20. Play tennis with my daughter and win.  Two years ago, I was able to beat her.  Winning is now a distant memory.  She is faster, stronger, and I hate to admit this, smarter than me.

Don’t worry- there will soon be a list of things I am NOT too old for!

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the U2 Concert…

Coincidence.  That’s the word of the day.  I was going to see U2 last night.  New Jersey Transit was all sorts of messed up, and the Husband was going to be a train behind me. I texted him that it was just so crowded, he should just meet me at the seats.  But in a bizarre coincidence, my husband happened to get on the same car as me, and the exact same part of the car.  The odds of this happening  are…. I don’t know…I have my writing cap on now, not the math one….

After we exit the train and begin walking to the stadium, I heard my name…..I turned around and it was one of my best friends from high school.  We’re friends on Facebook, and we chat, but I haven’t seen her in 30 years.  1987.  The year Joshua Tree came out.  Joshua Tree- the album that was going to be glorified by U2 that very evening.  Coincidence.

So on a night already filled with nostalgia, I was really transported back in time.  For just a little bit, my memory was very clear.  The 80’s just came rushing back.  It was the decade when I graduated High School and College.  Got my first real job.  Became friends with the three most amazing women.  Fell wildly in love.   It was the decade when everything seemed possible.

And as I walked to my seat I looked around.  People were showing ID and buying beer, but the ID was just a formality.  It was clear we were all well past 21.  it was clear that a lot of people were wearing clothes that were old enough to buy a beer.  The crowd was moving a bit slowly, and the conversations centered around tuition bills, and retirements, and arthritis.

But then the stage lights finally started to light red, and we realized there was movement on the stage…..

And the crowd started to sing ” ‘Cause tonight, we can be as one”-

People began swaying, tapping their feet….

Standing and jumping in the air….

And when I looked into the eyes of those around me….

I didn’t see people thinking about retirement….

I saw people as they were in 1987….

Young, full of hope and full of dreams- ready to take on the world.

And as they sang side A- I mean- the first half of that album is almost perfection, filled with songs most will instantly recognize.  But if you’re going to have a tour that is centered around an album, you need to play the flip side.  The songs that you might not necessarily remember.  And the crowd- well, U2 didn’t come on till 9:20, so I’m going to say a lot of the audience hadn’t been up this late recently.  And with the average age being around 47, there were a lot of trips to the bathroom, and some muttered grumblings about the volume…..  and there eyes started to show their age again.

But I looked at the Husband, who I’d met by coincidence tonight, and met due to a coincidence 25 years ago- and I smiled.  It’s wonderful to go back in time for a little bit, to think about places, and things, and people that you may not have thought about for awhile.  I have amazing memories, of love and loss, happiness and sadness, good and bad- and I treasure every one of those moments, because they have made me the person I am today.  I don’t want to go back in time- I don’t wish I could change anything.  I’ve had a pretty great yesterday- today is pretty awesome- and I can’t wait for tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

Sorry- 35 and Older Only

A few weeks ago I read that a new club would be opening in NYC.  The theme is 70’s ,80’s and 90’s music- the clientele is 35+.  Though I’m not much of a dancer, I find this concept highly desirable.  It will be nice to go somewhere and recognize all the songs, to see dances that neither whip or nay nay.  It got me to thinking- what else would benefit from an age make-over?

Fitness classes.  In my normal Sunday body conditioning class, we’ve already sort of done this.  The over 40’s end up on the left side of the room-what we refer to as the geriatric section.  When the instructor is particularly grueling, it’s nice to have lined faces to grimace along with as we realize we can’t do 100 burpees.  It really provides motivation too- hey, if that old guy can do it, so can this old girl.

Book stores.  Now I enjoy zombie/vampire/dystopian books as much as the next guy, but sometimes I’d like to find interesting books on the first floor. Not the fifth floor. In the corner. Under the dust.

Drug stores.  I would like to go into a store that has all the anti-aging products in one section.  The other things the store could sell would be hair dye, heavy moisturizer, (frankly, products that moisturize everything), orthotics, gingko biloba, and bifolcals.  The store should also have a sign listing the most commonly bought items by the 35+ community  just in case we forget what we came in for.  And forgot our shopping list.

Clothing stores.  I would like to enter one that doesn’t play music at levels akin to the eruption of Krakatoa. ( Sometimes, for fun, I go up to an employee and silently mouth the words of what I want.  I enjoy seeing them scream “WHAAAAAT” over and over again.)

Restaurants.  I think that an awesome centerpiece would be one containing attractive flashlights.  It might look nicer than 6 people pulling out their cell phones.  Perhaps print the offerings on both sides of the menu.  This way you have the option of reading the menu of the person sitting opposite you.

Theaters.  I would like to purchase inexpensive mezzanine seats in a theater that doesn’t have stairs that feel as if I’m scaling Everest while wearing heels.

These are just a few thoughts off the top of my head.  As much as I love watching the vitality and exuberance of the Millennial generation, sometimes I’d like to mingle with the boomers and the gen exers .  They usually have higher credit limits.

 

 

 

Vanity: Thy Name is Middle-Age

As some of you may know, I celebrated my 16th wedding anniversary last week.  What none of you know is that the husband posted a facebook notice about it.  The sentiment was sweet, and he posted two pictures of us. One pic was actually quite nice- we were dressed for opening night at Carnegie Hall.  Beautiful dress, make-up artfully applied, hair not only combed but styled. (for the record, we don’t usually attend opening nights of anything- the last one we were invited to was when they opened up an Arby’s down the street)  Then there was the other photo.  The one with me in a bathrobe.  A big, white, fluffy bathrobe that hotels artfully hang in the bathroom.  And before you think this was a provocative shot, I  assure you it was not.  Let me give you a mental picture.  Imagine a tall, willowy model showing off a bathrobe.  Now squish her down so she’s a foot shorter and half a foot wider.  That’s how I looked in this robe- anti-provocative.  And think about this- if you’re wearing a robe, are you wearing make-up?  If you’re me you’re not.  And is your hair neat?  If you’re me it’s not.  Yeah- good times.

When I saw the post- all I could think about was – really?  This is my visual legacy to the future- this picture of me unadorned in a white bathrobe?   Looking like the Stay Puft Marshmallow man?  I thought about asking the husband to take it down.

As I was about to call him, I thought about what I would be teaching the daughter if I took down this picture because I didn’t think it was a flattering portrayal of me.  What would that mean?  Was I ashamed to be short and curvy?  Was I ashamed of being seen without makeup?  Shouldn’t I be proud of my body and my appearance no matter what?  So I didn’t ask him to take it down.

I never thought of myself as vain.  I don’t obsess about what I wear. I use make-up because I like it.  My hair is in a simple, no fuss style.  I exercise and take care of my skin for the health benefits, not in a manner of trying to look younger than I am.  So why did I freak out about the picture?

I was proud of myself for overcoming my anxiety about my outer shell.  I felt good.  Who needs make-up?  Who needs a brush and hair product?  Not me.  I am happy with my appearance.  I look great just the way I am.  I am setting a great example to the daughter!   Long live the shot of me in a bathrobe!

When I saw the  daughter that night, the first thing she said to me was:  “Can’t believe you didn’t tell Dad to delete that picture.”

 

What’ a superpower

When I was five I was Batman for Halloween. I remember the costume- the plastic mask, the polyester jumpsuit, the cape.  I was obsessed with the show, and at 4:30 I would race to the tv to follow the story of Batman and Robin, and watch them save the world.  I loved Wayne Manor, especially the Batcave.  I wanted to be a superhero- to fight for those who could not stand up for themselves, to make the world a better place.  And the accommodations weren’t too shabby. Those were the dreams of a young suburban girl.  I wanted to take on the world.

As I got older, things changed.  Life got hard, often a struggle just to keep up.  I was in a marriage that I didn’t have the strength to get out of, a job that was monetarily fulfilling buy soul sucking.  I felt trapped and alone and afraid – the exact opposite of a superhero- I was Unbatman.  The world around me was a mess- financial crisis, war, poverty, sickness, homelessness- and there wasn’t a thing I could do about it- about anything.  Everywhere I turned- the situation seemed hopeless, and I was powerless.  This was not how the five year old me envisioned life.  Maybe I had the Batmobile, but I sure didn’t have anything else.  This was the reality of a 30 year woman.  I wanted to crawl into a cave.

Time passed, and I got older.  I’m in a better marriage and I ditched the job for something less lucrative but more fulfilling.  My building may have views of Gotham, but my apartment more closely resembles Alfred’s quarters.  Life is still hard- I face personal challenges, as does my family.  The world- well, you know.  But I’ve changed my perspective.  I have come to realize that I can’t save the world, but maybe I can make one persons day a little better- check on a neighbor who is ill and pick up some groceries, buy a meal for the person sitting on the corner, donate books to a shelter, volunteer my time.  As a parent I can try to raise my daughter to be a good person, a productive member of society.  Maybe the ability to do something good is the real superpower.  Maybe we’re all superheroes, capable of saving the world one small deed at a time.

I don’t wear a plastic mask anymore, just a make-up one.  My cape has been replaced by a giant scarf.  (But I do wear all black, so I’m sort of a dark knight…..) And I trying to be a better person, and better the lives of those around me.  This is the dream of a middle aged woman.

Dedicated to Adam West, who will always be my favorite Batman.

I Get By……

I had a little shard of glass in my foot yesterday,  Not even a shard, a grain of glass.  It is amazing how something so small could be so painful.  Hopping on my one good foot  I swabbed down a tweezer and a safety pin. I contorted my inflexible body so that I could sort of see the bottom of my foot, and set up my phone flashlight so I could take a peek.  I saw nothing- (this was one of those moments I hated progressive contacts- they neither help me close up or far away to any degree of accuracy)  So I did what any normal person in pain would do- I starting blindly picking at skin, while running my finger over the spot at what I then thought was a splinter, hoping I could will it out.  I exfoliated a bit of dead skin, but the foreign object was still there.

It was time to change my course of action.  I called my neighbor, asked if she was home, and if so, could she grant me a rather odd request?

This was very hard for me to do.  I am a person who takes her independence very seriously.  I always think I can figure it out, do whatever it takes, completely unassisted.  I have a husband, but I really keep him around because I enjoy his company and he takes the dog on the 10pm walk.  He’s perfectly happy watching me put together furniture and fix the internet connection.  I despise needy people- the kind that always need someone around, and can’t stand the pleasure of their own company- but that’s a whole other blog for another day.

As I’ve gotten older, I realize that sometimes you need help from others- sometimes it’s better to get a little assistance, like asking your neighbor to get something out of your foot (I’m happy my neighbor was home because I really didn’t want to ask my doorman)

After the shard debacle, I was having coffee with a friend, someone who is more fiercely independent than I am.  We discussed eventually moving to some sort of retirement community, because we realize, it would be nice to be surrounded by people in basically the same situation.  To be surrounded by people that we could assist, and if need be, assist us.  We realize that sometimes you need help, and it’s OK to ask for it.

I never felt comfortable asking my Mother for help.  My mother has things she is completely unwilling to even try to do, like reading instructions for a board game or art project.  She would tell me that instructions were written stupidly and she was not a “game person”.  She was also not an “outdoor” person.  Or a “sport” person. (She was, however a “shopping person”- but I digress again into a whole other blog)  So I learned to read instructions, and figure out my girl scout badges by myself.  But then, my Mother is also the queen of “I told you so”.  There are literally thousands of topics she is “expert” in, so if I were to admit I needed help, it would require a 3 hour lecture, and then this topic would be brought up constantly. (to this day, she still brings up thing from 40 years ago)  So I stopped asking for help and began to do things on my own.  I wanted to be strong and capable, not weak and needy.

It’s taken 50 years for me to realize that a strong person is one that has the ability to realize when they are in over their head.  It is a strong person that asks for help sometimes.  A strong person knows their limitations.  A weak person thinks they know it all.  A weak person thinks they can handle every situation completely by themselves.  I was right about wanting to be strong- I was wrong on how you become a strong person.

It’s OK to ask for help.  It’s OK not to know everything.  I’m glad I finally realized this.

What’s a Widget

Officially, this past weekend was my one month blogiversary.  Technically, it’s been slightly less.  I always had a longing to write, and as my 53rd birthday approached, I thought- “Why not start a blog?  How hard could it be?”

To begin:  really hard.  It took me three days to figure out how to get “Site Map” off my one post.  Three days.

Then there was the title.  What am I trying to say?  Getting old sucks but it’s better than the alternative?  That’s a little depressing, and I’m a somewhat upbeat person.  I was thinking about the title while I was still in bed.  As it took me 10 minutes to stretch out the kinks and actually get out of bed- the title came to mind.  And the mission statement?  50 is half of 100- so I’m in the second half.  And isn’t the second half of a game always the best part?

I always thought I was a somewhat intelligent person.  I know how to read.  I know basic arithmetic.  I signed up with WordPress.  That was easy.  I entered my title.  And then I actually tried to form the blog.  Theme?  What’s is a theme? Is this like a party?  Choose A for Roaring Twenties B for Under the Sea?  I just wanted to write a little, maybe throw in a picture or two.  Why does there have to be a theme?  Is one theme better than another?  I knew I could sit stymied by this for days, so I chose what seemed to be the simplest.  And I wrote.

I noticed the Community Pool page, how it was a good place to share your blog and get feedback.  So after twenty minutes and a lot of swearing, I figured out how to put my URL (is that what it’s called) in the comment box.   My one and only response?  Personalize the widgets.

What?

What’s a widget? (That’s not exactly what I exclaimed, but you get the gist)

And I still don’t know if widgets are important or why they’re important.  I don’t think I’ve ever looked at someone’s widgets.  Honestly, I don’t know if I want to look at someone’s widgets.  I want to read their stories, and look at their pictures.  There’s nothing wrong with an attractive face, but I like to see the heart.  To me, in the heart lies the beauty.

Next, I read the “how to” page.  The takeaway was tag your blogs.  I sort of , kind of, know what tagging is.  I live with a #15yearold.  I’ve tagged and been tagged on Facebook.  But how do I tag my work?  What best sums up what I’m writing about?  Wrinkles, age spots and arthritis?  No- that’s not who I am.  Who am I?  A mature woman who has had life experiences, some good and some bad, and I’ve lived to tell the tale.  Someone who is not ready to pack it in just because she can’t walk fast or see with 20/20 accuracy.  Too long for a tag.  And I struggle with the tag every day.  So now I just write in the first 15 words that come to mind, because 15 is the magic tag number.

Then I started reading blogs.  All sorts of blogs because I am interested in all sorts of things.  I love learning new things, and I love finding someone who enjoys the same things I do.  I have read things by people all over the world, and seen photos that I know were taken on my street (though it is a little weird seeing a picture of your local diner on someone else’s blog- I wanted to comment, “did you ever try the French Toast?  It’s delicious”, but feared a restraining order in my future)  And I learned that while everyone is unique, we are still all the same-a bunch of people trying to live the best life they can.

The writing- though.  What about the writing?  That’s why I wanted to blog- because I wanted to write.  And the writing is easy and hard at the same time.  I have opinions on literally every subject there is.  I could write 500 words on how I need to reorganize my desk for maximum efficiency (I’m looking at my not so tidy desk BTW).  So I’m rarely short of ideas.  But what’s the best way to convey meaning?  How should I explain my thoughts?

So my process (as of today, because this whole thing is a work in progress) is to jot down an idea when it comes to me.  I think about it.  And I think some more.  What is the point I’m trying to make?  How do I best convey my point?  What form should I use to write?  And I make a cup of tea, and I write.

So thanks to all of you who are accompanying me on my journey.  Hopefully my writing will improve.  Maybe I’ll make you laugh, or cry, or just feel.  Perhaps I’ll actually learn how to set up my blog properly.  I might even learn what the appropriate tags should be. But most of all, I’m just going to enjoy this new adventure.

A Different Perspective

Last weekend we went for dinner with some friends- a restaurant we’d never tried before, touted as Italian-ish.  Basically, it meant that pizza and pasta had unexpected flavors, such as cardamom with my tortellini (delicious by the way).   The rustic and chic place was located in a hotel which housed a rooftop bar.  It was a clear, warm-ish night, so in a fit of bonhomie, we headed up to the 31st floor.  In an outdoor space deprived city such as New York, we tend to  over occupy any area where we can see the sky above or the grass below.  But early-ish, the bar was not yet flooded with people- we even found a table.  Looking around, we saw the glittering skyline, the shining half moon- the world looked different from up there- the air was filled with possibilities.

Then we noticed the glass floor.  There was a section of the bar that had a glass floor, enabling one to see 31 floors down to the street.  The husband and friends practically danced over, begging me to come over.  I hesitated.  I am scared-ish of heights, and falling from heights. Curiosity overcame me- I slowly edged out onto the floor.  And it was incredible- to be standing directly above a city street, the see the tops of cabs and cars and people- it’s a whole new way of looking at something I see every single day.  The shapes, the colors, the proportions- everything was altered.

The husband couldn’t believe I actually ventured onto the glass- and he told that to the ridiculously attractive couple who had chosen the seat right on the edge of the glass.  He explained to them about my fears.  He also explained to them that our teenage daughter thought we were lame and old, and she was never going to believe that we were at this bar, let alone that I was standing on a glass floor.  The couple just smiled- they were the exact opposite of old and lame- chic, stylish- the kind of couple where you develop crushes  because they just epitomized “cool”.

We went back to our table and talked about how life is good, not good- ish.  Then, we heard the opening beat to “White Lines”.  For 4 people who came of age in the eighties, this was like an anthem.  We all knew the words, something most of the people in the bar didn’t, as they were probably all born post 1983.  And as we knew the words, we sang.  Not loudly, and without breakdancing, but we sang.  And we smiled and laughed, thinking about happy memories from the past.

And the ridiculously attractive woman came to our table and said:

“Tell your daughter you are neither old or lame.  You are sitting at the top of the world and singing Grandmaster Flash.  Every word.  You were cool in the eighties and you’re cool now.”

That’s when I realized- your life is how you view it.  And sometimes you have to view it through someone else’s eyes for just a moment.  Look right instead of left- up instead of down.  It’s easy to lose perspective, because we often do things by rote.  We wake up at the same time, travel the same route to places, eat at the same restaurants- look at things the same way.

So when bad thoughts creep in, or you’re just feeling out of it- look at something from a different angle.  You might like what you see.

UM- You mean me?

It’s about 11 pm on a temperate evening in NYC.  A family exits a Broadway show and the daughter goes to the stage door to try to get autographs of the amazing cast.  A weary mother walks across the street and stands in front of the Scientology Center.  As she scrolls through her emails, a young man approaches.  He is not there to harm her- he is there to chat her up……

Yes.  I got hit on last night.  By a man probably 25 years my junior.

Of course my first thought was “Whaaaat?”

I was dressed rather plainly- simple black dress (think Breakfast at Target, not Tiffany), black flats, grey beaded necklace.  I was not overly made up, and this was not Times Square of the 70’s, so I’m assuming he knew I wasn’t for hire.  I’m attractive, but I look my age-   So whaaat?

I’ve had men approach me with more amorous intentions, but they are men of my age.  OK- not my age, but older.  Much older.  To a 70 year old guy at the gym, or Barnes and Noble, I am a vixen.  But younger guys….whaaat?

Part of getting older has a lot of challenges.  The hardest one for most people is the physical signs of aging- the loss of youthful beauty.  Skin is not as bright, hair is a little greyer, lines creep up around your face.  Gravity takes its toll on your body.  I take care of myself- drink water, exercise, eat reasonably healthy, moisturize every part of my body- but I don’t do these things to look younger- I do them simply to maintain what I have.  And I don’t look 25 anymore.  I don’t look 45.  I look like I’m 53.

So why was this guy asking me out for tea?  What made him stop and talk to a woman standing on the sidewalk scrolling through her smartphone?

He was nice looking, dressed neatly.  He was able to hold a conversation and seemed semi literate.  He was not crass or vulgar.  So what was wrong with him?  Why was he talking to me?

Notice how I think something is wrong with him, not how something was right with me?   That’s what age has done to my mind set.  When I was younger I didn’t question why a man was asking me out.  I assumed he was attracted to the exterior, and then after conversing, was intrigued by my intelligence and wit.  But I always assumed the physical attraction came first.  My mind can not conceive a man in his twenties being physically attracted to me.

I’ve come to this conclusion:  my inner beauty shines brightly.  The confidence that only comes from life experience radiates through every pore and wrinkle on my face.  I am a force to be reckoned with.  It’s a good thing I’m married or watch out……Maybe maturity tops youth.

Or maybe he wasn’t wearing his glasses.