It always seemed that crossing The Great 50th Birthday Reef would be fraught with anxiety about hopes not realized, about muscles and grey matter, slackening in tone and a yearning to live long enough and in reasonable good health, so one could complete one’s bucket list.
Surprisingly, I found myself relieved that, at last, here was a time when I didn’t have to dance to any music but my own! So here I am being thankful that I’m past 50:-
· Because I don’t have to follow fashion trends. In fact I can throw on whatever I pull out from the innards of my cupboard (mismatched, sizes too big, not trendy or cool) and be out the door in 5 minutes flat. Sure I won’t turn any heads, but I’d be the one you want to call in an emergency.
· Because when my hair stands up from my scalp just minutes after a comb has created order in the curly locks or what remains of the once luscious tresses, I’m happy that at least a part of my body is defying gravitational forces.
· Because mood swings and a variety of other minor irritants to marital harmony can be attributed to menopause.
· Because people don’t expect you to remember their birthdays and anniversaries as you once did. (I was always dismal at history and dates)
· Because a Pinterest inspired home is only a recent phenomena. Don’t get me wrong, I love it that one doesn’t have to be an interior designer to have an aesthetically pleasing home or train as a chef to be able to turn out delicacies with foreign sounding names with such ease. I’m just thrilled I didn’t have to try!
· Because I don’t have to lead an exciting life with a dizzying round of parties and travel and meeting people and making new friends. Instead I hang out with people who can enjoy my company even when I’m having a shlumpadinka day.
· Because having ‘only’ 241 friends on Facebook (“That’s all the friends you have??” Question from my teenage nephew) doesn’t embarrass me.
Of course you always run the risk of being labeled, but after 50 you’ll find none of the labels stick for very long. And then you’re left with your slightly out of shape, imperfect body - but ohhhhh! So comfortable in your skin! Wouldn’t you, like me, choose comfortable any day?
Susan Matthew (nee Chandy) Math '80