Getting old is bullshit.
By bullshit, I mean it is amazing.
Here’s how getting older is bullshit.
I’ve been working out regularly since January. I mean, I still have a ways to go before I’d consider myself in good shape, but I’m fucking better than I’ve been in years.
I do a plank every day. I do wall sits. This shit isn’t easy.
So, one would think that the act of cooking Thanksgiving dinner wouldn’t be enough to hobble me for days.
Yet, there I was, on Thanksgiving evening, writhing in agony because I hurt my back while cooking. The turkey wasn’t even that big. Only 13 pounds.
I understand my basic mistake. I stood for hours, in my bare feet, on a ceramic tile floor. This is just something I can no longer do.
I can no longer ignore arch support no matter how fast I do a mile on the elliptical.
Also, mistakes were made when I allowed a 7 year old granddaughter and a 9 year old granddaughter to join me in a recliner. I didn’t move for quite a while, but I regret nothing. Being covered in grandchildren is worth it. Mostly.
I probably shouldn’t have done that either.
Friday morning, the kids and grandkids went for an outing.
I love them all dearly. I am so glad we got to spend time together. I am grateful for our children and our grandchildren. I am grateful for the people our children brought into our lives.
I was also grateful that they were going to be gone for a sustained period of time. My back was in agony and I had to feel better because I was taking my mother to see the afternoon show of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
Even though I was in pain and even though I wanted nothing more than to soak in a hot tub, I had to clean it out first.
I am not pointing fingers at who’s pubes were in the tub. Could have been one of my stepdaughter’s. Could have been Joey’s. Could have been mine.
I just knew I wasn’t going to risk soaking in a hot tub with my son in law’s pubes floating around.
Our bedroom still reeks of Tiger balm, and my back isn’t perfect, but feels better.
I’m just still bummed out by how much it knocked me on my ass. And I’m bummed that I have to finally stop being stubborn about some things.
I love bare feet, but I can’t take hours on end in my bare feet anymore. I just can’t. And that is total bullshit.
But here is how getting older is amazing.
So, as it turns out, the show wasn’t what we expected.
I knew the Trans-Siberian Orchestra toured around Christmas every year. I heard clips from commercials. Like a bit from The Nutcracker, but with guitars and drums.
Mom and I thought we were seeing a huge orchestra, from Russia, which would play Christmas music.
As it were, the name Trans-Siberian Orchestra is somewhat misleading.
They aren’t from Russia and the orchestra, while playing a part, isn’t the focus.
They’re like 80s hair metal, but with Christmas songs and a story line that plays out like a Hallmark Christmas movie. If Hallmark makes Christmas movies, I’m not sure. I don’t watch that stuff because it is not interesting to me.
The light show was amazing. But we spent the first 20 minutes kind of just staring, then looking at each other, and then staring some more. Then mom leaned over.
Martha: Shell, what is this?
Me: I have no idea. That guy looks like Angus Young playing something from Nightmare Before Christmas.
Me: They’re not even Russian.
Martha: Are they singing in Latin?
Me, holding my breath to keep from laughing:…
Martha: Seriously, I am worried about that one guy playing guitar. He seems upset.
If I had been younger, I would have been horribly annoyed by the amount of money I spent to take my elderly mother (who could still kick my ass, because she’s been working out a lot longer than I have) to watch some goddamn Christmas music and what the shit is this?
But in that moment, I was present.
My back was in agony and I spun around in my chair like a rotisserie chicken.
The guy in the seat next to me kept swirling his popcorn bucket which would normally drive me mad, but it didn’t. Swirling popcorn was just part of the whole experience.
Plus, my mother did her best to say something to me to make me laugh.
As I’ve aged, I’ve learned being present means everything. I’ve learned to appreciate how finite we are. It doesn’t scare me and makes appreciate the people I love more.
Okay, finality scares me a little.
During our time, watching a hair metal band work though Christmas music, we were infinite. During that time together, we were going to live forever.
Disclaimer: I have learned that TSO has a big following. I know a lot of people love them. And that is wonderful, but they are so much not my bag. That being said, even though I would never pay to see them again, I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything. All the way down to paying ten bucks for two bottles of water.
Getting old feels amazing.
For so many years, everything was serious. Everything. I didn’t make a lot of time for silliness and that’s a goddamn tragedy.
Mom and I had to sit in the parking garage for over 30 minutes waiting to back out of our space. Randy and I bought a new car and it has a back camera and mom is just fascinated by that.
Martha: Back up a little. I want to see the camera.
Me: We can’t go anywhere.
Martha: You can go a few inches.
So I did.
Martha: Okay, a few more.
So I did.
Martha: C’mon, you have plenty of room.
We didn’t care, one little bit, how ridiculous we looked backing up and stopping half a dozen times. And it’s not like people didn’t see. We were surrounded.
Martha: I am so proud of us.
Me: For what?
Martha: We went to this show and we did great.
Me: We went to an arena that I’ve been to a zillion times and successfully parked in a parking garage? This is your proud mother moment?
Martha: Yeah, I guess. And we still haven’t moved from this spot.
Martha: You suck.
I hope you all had a lovely holiday. I’m looking forward to putting my head down and plowing through the cold weather until spring arrives.
Don’t forget to be present. Don’t forget to appreciate the people you love.
I’m curious. How do you feeling about getting old?
Image courtesy of sabinevanerp.