The urge to purge. That’s what gives me immense pleasure these days. Getting rid of all the old stuff, to prepare for the new that I will infuse into my life. A momentous day includes a trip to the landfill to toss broken appliances, used engine oil, and dead batteries. I love going to the Salvation Army where I’ll bring old clothes, worn household items and no longer needed books. All are relics and artifacts of years past, in the feng sui tradition of clearing space to let in the light of a new day.
I am the grouchy lady standing behind the young father in Williams Sonoma telling his sticky-fingered five-year-old: “No touch, please.” The darling is pulling large pots off the shelf, squealing in delight as they clatter to the floor in all their copper finery. In my day, we didn’t beg our kids not to destroy merchandise in high-end stores. We tied their hands to their strollers, gave them the stink-eye, and hissed: “Don’t make me have to talk to you.” They didn’t have a chance. And that’s the way it’s supposed to be.
While we’re looking for potions and pomades to keep us looking young, what are we doing for our wrinkly insides? Is it possible that the bumps and bruises of our external selves are really reflections of what’s going on within?
Out with the old, in with the new. New year, new goals, perhaps. What does this look like to you? For each of us, it means different things, but what we all seem to have in common is a desire to make 2018 better than 2017. Exactly what is it we’d like to improve? Politics, the economy, relationships, jobs…the list is endless. There are so many opportunities for change, aren’t there?
Short of becoming a mature version of the fed-up ladies in A Bad Mom’s Christmas or even a female Grinch, there are many ways a geezer goddess can survive the holidays. Years of brainwashing have set us up to be exhausted and frazzled when December 25 finally arrives. There is another way.
My gift to geezer goddesses everywhere is my Christmas list, my wish for you and the end of the scourge of unrealistic expectations.
My hair will become matted and unruly like a stray dog loping through the streets of Baltimore before I succumb to the ambush of a hair stylist. My nails will curl backward to reach my knuckles before I visit the manicurist. My face will develop craters like the surface of Mars where dune buggies fall into the crevices before I contact my esthetician. Let my shoulders develop lumps like coal from the stress of living before I succumb to the laden touch of a masseuse again. These are people whom I hire to beautify, simplify, liquefy and mollify me, but they just won’t stop talking.
Spring has sprung. The buttery yellow daffodils sway in the breeze while the red-breasted robin beckons from the trees. Mother Nature has pulled out all the stops once again as the drab grey winter gives way to the spectacular performance that is the pleasant prelude to summer.
The scene inside my house, while not as hueful as outside, is no less daunting. Each year the ritual is the same – swap winter wardrobe for a summer one. Scarves, hats and gloves find their way into my grandmother’s old black steamship trunk, a fitting color for the deadness that has prevailed over these last few dull months. Sweaters the color of mud find their way to the bottom of the pile. Coats lined with fleece have no place in the exuberance that is now June’s finery. Boots, socks, wool pants that have honorably performed their job of keeping my legs warm are now relieved of their duties.