Turning 60 has brought about some positive changes. Something about this milestone finally allowed me to dig out my big girl panties and actually put them on. Part way. I went back to Weight Watchers with a real commitment. And I’ve stuck with it. Fortunate circumstances have allowed us to pay off our credit card debt, and I promised my husband that this was the last time we would have to do that. And I’ve stuck with it. Yea, me, right! Absolutely Yea, me. And yet…As I stopped obsessing about the giant elephants in the room, food and money, I realized there is a pack of little elephants hiding in the closet and under the bed. My jewelry supplies are gathering dust and I’m not taking advantage of the tools my vocal coach has gifted me with to practice every day. Or even every week. My apartment is less than clean and while I know that if I went back to the gym, the pain in my back and legs would ease up, I don’t go. My free time is spent playing video poker and binge watching the Great British Baking Show. I still have the same inability to make a mistake and move on that I had in high school when I had a car accident the day I got my license. Guilt. Shame. More guilt, more shame. I carry on endless defensive conversations in my head in order to feel less embarrassed about the mistake I made, especially if others are involved. If other people know I’ve done something stupid. The horror. It’s a mistake. Everyone makes them. Make amends. Learn something. Move on. The upside of an error in judgment against others is I’m so f%^*#ing embarrassed, I’m less likely to make the same mistake again. Maybe. It’s the disservices we do to ourselves that are so painless and easy to repeat. No one ever has to know that I’m completely unmotivated to create new pieces of jewelry. That although I’m committed to Weight Watchers, my relationship with food remains tense and my bingeing is not under control. That I’m so terrified of growing old and dying because I feel I’ve accomplished nothing in the 6 decades that are behind me. That I feel slightly out of place among young moms and Jewish women, aspiring actors, and free-spirited retirees, successful women, and anyone with a purpose. So like an old dog too frightened to learn any new tricks, I’ll hobble around with my big girl panties down around my ankles and make amends to everyone but myself. Woof.
The Monster Under the Bed