IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING ABOUT YOURSELF OR YOUR LIFE…. WHAT WOULD IT BE????
The usual things that come to mind are money or relationships, or world peace. Granted, I would love to win the lottery and use that money to build homeless shelters; pay off my children’s student loans and mortgages; send my grandchildren to college, debt-free. Oh, happy day! And it might be nice to be swept off my feet by a handsome millionaire who wanted me to travel the world with him. That would be hard to pass up. As I was contemplating world peace, it seemed so far beyond reach, my mind sent me away from altruism altogether and in a totally different direction.
Selfishly, what I would really like is my 35-year-old body back. I’d even settle for my 45-year-old body. I know, it’s a pipe-dream but just picture this…
…I could fit into all those clothes in the back of the closet that I’ve been saving for that SOMEDAY when I am once again a size 8.
…I could go to my class reunion and be the envy of all those formerly “beautiful people” who I always envied. Such sweet revenge!
…I could return to climbing mountains and hiking in rain forests without stopping every fifteen minutes to rest my aching back. Actually, I would be happy to just hike the mile around my neighborhood, pain-free.
…All those bucks I’m handing over to the chiropractor could pay for a luxurious spa vacation, complete with massages and make-overs in some romantic city, maybe Rome.
…I could wear cute shoes again instead of those sensible, stabilizing, incredibly ugly ones.
…Let’s not forget those 35-year-old eyes that could safely drive at night, to plays and concerts and wee hour parties.
You get the picture. I don’t mind so much getting older. It’s all the body betrayal that goes along with it. I deserve better. I ate healthy foods. I avoided alcohol and cigarettes. I exercised and got those recommended 8 hours of shut-eye a night. I read health magazines, took my vitamins, and maintained a positive outlook on life. The positive outlook is still there, though a bit blurred by cataracts and slowed down by arthritis. But I’m hanging in there, waiting impatiently for the first complete body transplant.
(You can read more about Sharon’s humorous approach to aging in her memoir, Daughter of the Mountains and her poetry book, Tapestry.)
Sharon Canfield Dorsey is an award-winning poet and author of two children’s books, Herman, the Hermit Crab and the Mystery of the Big, Black, Shiny Thing, and Revolt of the Teacups.
Her poems are also included in an anthology, Captured Moments.