Turning THE corner

stripper40 was never an issue, but 50 sounded a bit over the hill to me. Grandmotherly and bordering on invisible (or wishing you were).

Well, here I am on the day after, once an hourglass figure, now a 40 lbs. overweight blob. Even my feet have grown a size. Seems I was right, it’s the beginning of decay for sure! “I finally got my mind together, now my body is falling apart“. Completely unemployable, every bone creaking, nothing left to say.

I’ve been lobbying for a very long time, because I’m paranoid like that, to prevent any kinds of large gatherings for the occasion; loudly sworn off cooking and cleaning, surprise crowds behind my couch, wakeup calls etc. I don’t like the attention, the buzz of more than 6 people in the same room, I can’t coordinate fancy cooking, it’s a waste of money and energy since I’m not enjoying it, and it’s my day, right? Not an obligation?

Not quite so in Denmark. It is traditional for the birthday girl’s love for friends and family (including those of her male partner’s on his birthday) to be measured in the amount of time and money she spends on cleaning and cooking for them. If you refuse, you are at worst a nasty, antisocial little misfit, at best you can get away with “weird”. But certainly not normal or completely acceptable. Some send you gifts in advance, because then you are honorbound by duty to arrange something for them. Sorry, I just don’t get it.

Luckily my own family has sort of semi-adapted to my anti-traditional convictions by now and don’t make much fuss, but my anxiety still lurks more often than they deserve. (Incidentally I also got married in secret to avoid bachelorette parties and suchlike strange traditions. I don’t think anybody would have actually arranged one, but one can never be too certain)

I enjoy birthdays when they are just quiet regular days. I’ll have cake, but that’s a regular preference too, no need to save cakes for a special occasion, is there?

ANYWAY, I think I can safely breathe again and say that was it and nobody had to die. I ended up not making a cake, maybe another day. My mum dropped by with a GORGEOUS cardigan that she knit me and we had homemade pizza with champagne.

1c-2I should give you a photo of myself wearing it. But then I’d have to brush my hair and change out of my floppy blue pants, and I’m too lazy to get the camera tripod out just now.

Linky to the pattern

My Yahoo mail has a banner ad today saying: “Would you like to date older women in your area?” Showing a photo of a busty, partyclad blonde 30 years of age tops. Oy.

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17 thoughts on “Turning THE corner

  1. well, Happy birthday! Congrats on getting through your first half century. 🙂 I know what you mean about aging, though – I didn’t even mind 50 too much, but I now realize 60 is looming fast, and guess what? People who are 60 are old. Only I am not. I keep a close eye on my Mom, now 76, and she still isn’t old, so I will keep going. But I don’t need a big party. They are tradition in my family for milestone years, maybe they will have lost count on me? I’ll not remind them. 🙂 I am safe with my dad – the other day he was telling me about a couple with 4 small children and said the couple was “just about your age”. I was horrified that someone my age would have to deal with 4 small children. Turns out the couple is in their early 30s. I pointed out that they are actually closer to his grandchildren’s age. He was startled. 🙂

    1. You’re right, I keep looking at 50 somethings and saying “that’s not me?!” In my mind I’m still as spry as ever, all that crap about losing your ability to learn, nonsense.

  2. Happy Birthday, spoken in a hushed tone… but, smiling just the same.. I too find it hard to imagine that 58 is nearing for me, as most days I feel 30 or 40, unless it’s the next day after working too hard in the garden, then I feel 70.. Gravity is a nasty word in my vocabulary now, but it is what it is and I plan on loving this body even if it’s not the same one of my forties.. Great post.. Take care and enjoy your fifties …

    Laura 🙂

    1. Thank you Laura. It does seem unfair, now they’re telling us we’re getting closer to all becoming centenarians, that the decrepitude of the shell is proportionately much more advanced than our years.

      1. Pia, don’t listen to what they are saying about us… We are as young as we feel (most days) I plan on leaving this earth feeling like 35, even if I’m 80 or 90 at the time…
        Hugs and take care, Laura

    1. It seems that way in my head, at some point there really is no hope of returning to former glory (I was very cute when I was 3!) and I’m sort of still transitioning… We all feel 25 on the inside, right?

  3. I can sympathise with your dislike of parties as well. Although seeing some friends and making cake for them was something I did much more in the past. I still have two more birthdays to go until I will be reaching this threshold. Anyway, Happy Birthday to you.

    1. Thank you! I don’t mind having friends over for cake, but I prefer it to be a non-occasion where I’m not a freak show to be given speaches about and other weird stuff. 😉

  4. Happy Birthday, girlfriend! Seems like I’m almost 3 years ahead of you and no, I don’t cook and clean worth a ****** either! But, I must say I think Denmark has the whole birthday thing the wrong way round. Both in the US and UK, other*** people make a fuss of the birthday person and the other**** people cook or bring the cake or take you out and treat you*** to dinner. OK so they don’t clean your house, but we don’t always want others finding those %#$%^%s, do we??? Maybe you should make a point of being in one of those countries for your birthday in future. (I loved the bit about the 30 something woman being ‘older’.)

    1. Thanks! In all fairness I think it’s me who’s being difficult, I have a feeling that most people, women at least, do enjoy arranging a large party on round birthdays. (why else would they keep doing it?) I just cringe at any kind of formalities and ceremony, on my behalf or anybody else. I can’t get into the spirit of it.

  5. That sounds like a PERFECT birthday to me. I was never happy in crowds even if I coped and went freely, my anxiety is much much better (just took 5 years to get over that one), but I do crave silence and non-input more and more as the time goes and lose my calm and concentration very easily if I’m not allowed my “flow”. I come out of the cave when I’m ready, but making me rarely goes well.

    1. Yes, silence is vital isn’t it? I say silence, but what I really mean are natural sounds: birds, water, wind, with their natural fluctuations in intensity.

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