My belly seems to be my theme for the last couple of days, but today’s poem reaches beyond my belly to the entire process of aging. I’m 68 today and enjoy my thoughts on life and my belly! Apparently, my belly is a favorite topic of mine!
The View Down and The View Up
The view down startles me today!
In exercise class,
sitting on my mat cross-legged, I looked down at my belly.
Recently, I lost fifteen pounds;
the bulge of my tummy has shrunk!
I love the loss!
My tummy doesn’t stick out like before.
The shrinkage is good!
Having just turned sixty-five.
I see my body changing,
delightful yet sad!
Arthritis cripples several fingers
and my thumbs.
Once I had straight lovely fingers,
hands I loved to view.
Now I see my mom’s and grandma’s hands
crooked and achy,
where mine used to be.
I still wear beautiful turquoise rings;
pain screams through the beauty.
My right knee hints of hurting today.
I have a brace I keep handy
just in case.
As I age,
the worst part so far—
I pee my pants
when I cough
when I sneeze
when I laugh too hard.
Thankfully, pads ended years ago
when my period stopped,
and I celebrated.
Now I have returned to pads
I fear an inexplicable puddle.
Will Depends be in my future?
keep my body nimble, limber and moving.
meaty, meaningful conversations
keep my mind nimble, flexible and alive.
Facing this next phase of life,
I want to meet and greet
the elderly woman in me.
I want to accept her limits,
to challenge her mindset,
to embrace her idiosyncrasies.
I don’t see me as a feeble ole lady
wearing nylons rolled up to my knees
I will continue to wear hot pink and leggings
wobbling with style and grace.
I want to redefine being
a Senior Citizen.
I have “Hot Tamale” red spiked hair
instead of gray.
I saw the gray and white coming
and opted to hold on to my youth.
I’m a redhead at heart,
because of my red-headed father.
I’m young at heart.
I’m trim today,
because I have to be.
Echoes of family genetics
keep me steadfast.
My maternal grandmother and her sisters
overweight German stock.
I have a life partner
that shares my attitudes.
We travel and enjoy life.
We laugh. We talk. We dance.
We start many days with a rousing Cribbage game.
He’s older than me
I watch his wise ways
of handling these changes.
I have dear friends and family who encourage me
to be the authentic woman God created me to be.
The future is bright.
The day is calm.
I like all of me
the helpless baby I was,
the energetic five-year-old,
the obnoxious thirteen-year-old,
the sixty-five-year-old crone.
I honor each one and their influence on me today.
Yes, years bring wisdom
a strong knowing
for God’s next phase
a new uncharted adventure
The view up at this glorious world graces my day.
A verdant green forest of piñon pine
A luscious purple mesa lit up at sunset
Cholla cactus in full fuchsia bloom
My fifteen-year-old Siamese cat who struggles
with feline diabetes yet meows his love to me
Summer newness exploding in our garden
The view down
into my body and soul—
I like what I see!
The view up
out of my world
reaches to the clouds and back
to my God.
Three years ago, I wrote this poem. Obviously, the coronavirus pandemic has changed our dance and travel joys, but physically, not much has changed. I celebrate the idea of being a Baby Boomer with a purpose, and I found that here in the Ultimate Blog Challenge. Thank you! And I continue to wonder about this time of my life!
How has your body changed with aging? What are you doing to combat the changes? What are you doing to accept the changes? Share your thoughts below.
Visit my website to find out about my new book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? and my other five books and three cookbooks: https://laradasbooks.com