I’ve decided. I want to be old, sloppy, and look ridiculous in a bikini. I want to have a stain on my shirt that looks suspiciously like ketchup. I want to keep all the weight I’ve gained over the years. I want to prove that that is the look of success.
I heard they dressed some of the Occupy Wallstreet protestors up in suits and cut their hair, and then suddenly people took them a lot more seriously. I want to be the opposite. Except for the hair cutting– that’s fine. I want to go the other direction. And be taken seriously.
When I get old, or even considerably older, I want to look my age. I want to wear big, comfortable clothes. I want to never wear anything I don’t feel like wearing. I want to forget to look in the mirror, even when there’s something in my teeth. I don’t want this to make me quirky or eccentric or gross. I want it to be the way life works.
I want to be better at everything when I’m old. Better at knowing what really matters. Better at appreciating myself. Better at being nonjudgmental. Better at doing the things I love and being around the people I want to be around.
And at the same time, I’m scared of being old, sloppy, and ridiculous looking in a bikini. I’m scared of weight. People talk about baby weight “After my third kid, there’s no WAY I was losing that weight.” Oh shit, I think. Should I have kids?
I keep getting the impression that getting older successfully means looking like you’re not getting much older. Which usually means fighting a desperate, constant, losing battle against biology. From a distance, it looks a lot like having a terminal illness. And in a way, I guess it is. You fight every day, putting yourself through painful procedures and grueling exercise regimens, and then, eventually, the things you’ve been staving off overwhelm your body. And that is that.
I don’t want to waste my time.
A reader sent me this little clip. (I could probably embed the video so it looks better, but for some reason I forget how and I don’t have enough time to figure it out.) In it, the peppy announcer is praising Jennifer Love Hewitt for getting back on track. As in, losing weight, and keeping a young-looking body. “She’s back from the dead!”