Saturday, January 21, 2017

On Being An Adult

On being an adult.

It is not so bad being an adult.  Being an elderly adult is a different thing altogether.

The pain from your joints never lets you forget that you have become elderly. Your joints swell, and ache, and deform,  unless you are very lucky.

Your memory has lapses...forgetting the names of plants. Forgetting the names of your children's childhood friends. Forgetting small family anecdotes.
Nothing major, but you still wonder where that memory went? How could I forget that??

My children seemed to forget more of their childhoods than I. I remember much of my childhood...or do I really?
I find myself wondering if the memories are programmed from family stories, or from real memories.
It is very disconcerting, as I realise that memories are coloured by the folklore of retelling. How much is reality, and how much is recounted memory from other  adults?

My memories of childhood are very mixed. I have good memories and quite dark memories. None of them abusive as such, but some of them damaging by implication. "You are so bumble footed" "You are clumsy""You are knock knee ed" " You have an awkward shape"
All guaranteed to rob me of self confidence, none of it intentional, I am sure.
However it took it's toll, and the mixed up me is the result.

I remember a night when a man said to my mother "Isn't she beautiful?" and my mother answered doubtfully, "Yes?" I felt simultaneously crushed and happy. Happy that someone outside my circle thought I looked nice, but crushed that my mother didn't seem to be convinced, as to my beauty.

Ego I guess. We never know how others perceive us.
I always strived to make my children feel they were perfect, and I smothered them with physical affection, and daily affirmations of how much I loved them, and respected them as both children, and adults, when they grew to adulthood. I loved my son's chosen partner. I loved my daughter's expartner.
Now, I love my son in law. and I still love my son's expartner.

I have a wonderful Uncle, who turns 100 this year. He is still in charge of his faculties, and very much aware of life around him. His lovely wife is still going strong, and is partly responsible for his continuing  good health.

Adulting is indeed a very hard passage in our lives. Old adulting is even harder, and not for the faint hearted. Or the slipped fart,  or the wet myself unexpectedly brigade.
You never know when sabotage might strike your poor unsuspecting bodies!

I hope I die before too many indignities attack me.


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