Like a Fine Whine

I have come to an unfortunate conclusion recently:

I am getting old.

I’m not so happy about that.  Until recently, I always told the truth about my age because people seemed so stunned to hear it.  “No way!”  They’d say.  “I would have guessed you were only about thirty-five!”

Oh, Baby, I’d gloat.  Tell me more.

I think the downhill slide started when different parts of my body started talking without my permission.  My knees pop, my ankles creak, my hip makes a grinding noise.  My teeth chatter for no apparent reason, and my jaw clicks when I least expect it.  And I’ve started grunting when I bend over; what the hell is that?

Best of all is the snap!crackle!pop! taking place along my spine every time the weather changes.  Give me a good thunderstorm and all that metal in there sounds like an Orville Redenbacher orgasm.

Then, at my son’s pre-school Valentine’s Day party, it finally happened.

I’ve been expecting it since the day the Little Guy was born.  I know I’m older than most of the mommies in his class.  I knew this moment was coming.

But still.

I can still hear that voice, sweet and oh-so-nicely offering me a seat beside her at the party:  “After all, we Grandmas should stick together.”

There was chocolate nearby, so I let her live.

I can accept that. I can take it.  Some women actually are Grandmothers by my age.  When it comes to parenthood, I got started late and just couldn’t figure out when to stop, so I really shouldn’t be offended by being mistaken for the Little Guy’s grandmother.

I can deal with a noisy, achy body and gray hairs that grow in faster than I can color them away, and I can even tolerate the little lines that are starting to show up on my face.  I can smile politely at people who think I’m a grandmother.

But the worst was yet to come.

About a month ago, one of my dearest friends fell at work and shattered her ankle.  Yeah, that’s how she and I do things:  I break my neck, she breaks her leg; I get plates and screws, she gets plates and screws and pins.  We’ve been competing against each other since we were eight years old, and I don’t see either one of us letting up any time soon

Anyway, I contacted a mutual friend to let him know about her injury.   His first question?

“Is she post-menopausal?”

Now, I could have taken that several different ways.  He’s a pharmacist, so he was asking from a medical standpoint, concerned about how well she might heal.  He’s known her almost as long as I have, so he was trying to figure out just how badly her bones might have broken.  Basically, he’s a good guy who was just worried about a friend.

But I didn’t take it that way.

No, I am exactly two weeks older than she is, so I took his question as “are you post-menopausal?”

Like I said, competitive.

Our friend is not allowed to wonder if I am post-menopausal.  He is not allowed to even think that I might be.   He knows damn well exactly how old I am, and that I am definitely not old enough for menopause.

She is not post-menopausal because I am not post-menopausal, and we are both still young and vibrant NON- MENOPAUSAL women.

Who just happen to have lots of metal replacement parts that have nothing to do with age or hormone levels.

We are not old.

Now give me a moment to find my bifocals so I can proofread this.

Author: A.J. Goode

I am a romance novelist, single mother of three, and a high school lunchlady. To be completely honest, I have no idea which of those jobs is the most rewarding and which is the biggest challenge. I love them all. I write romance novels about the kind of people who might pass me on the street every day. My characters are often hurting in some way, and need to learn to trust others in order to heal themselves. I also blog about trying to focus on writing, and about my day-to-day experiences in small-town America. I write about life. The good, the bad, and the just plain odd.

6 thoughts on “Like a Fine Whine”

  1. Lessee, we’re the same age, alas, I started the whole kid-thing early. Really early. Like, she was born 18 months after we graduated early.


    That being said, I have 5 grandchildren, lots of funny bone-crunching noises,(don’t get me going on how some of those joints behave during a strong weather front!), and yeah, I’ve taken to dying my hair purple because it makes the sparkly silver hair even sparklier. Grandmotherhood is awesome. And it looks like the newset grandchild is going to be as weird as I am! He loves my “highly questionable taste in music”. Wonder if next year is too soon to take him to Wicked Faire…?

    And menopause. Our heating bill was lovely this year, because I spent all winter half-dressed and turning the heat down. This, from the woman who bundles up under a pile of blankets in August. Actually, I’m sitting here, without a shirt, sweating profusely. And you *know* where I live and what the weather is like up here, this fine, April springtime weather. 😀 Actually, other than the ridiculous urge to go streaking, I am enjoying menopause. I think I had 4 periods last year, and only one of them actually required a pad or two. A girl can get used to this! Okay, wearing summer clothes in a Yooper winter is a little weird, but hey, I’m the one with purple hair and facial piercings, so how weird can it really be?

    As for my age, there is my bilogical age, and then there’s my behaviour age. I am currently 12. I may get a tattoo this year. Probably after my daughter’s wedding (yes, that daughter!) this fall, if we have any money to spare… 😀

    Age is, ultimiately, all in your head. My own grandfather used to forget his age and would be surprised at his reflection in the mirror. He couldn’t figure out why he looked old. He certainly didn’t *feel* old. I only feel old when there’s a big weather front coming through. But you know what that’s like. Hazards of old injuries and all that.


    1. Deb, any Yooper who doesn’t bundle up in April has my deepest respect. I bow before you, O Goddess!

      Can’t deny getting older, I guess. . . And it’s better than the alternative! But let’s see . . . How does one put this delicately? When a gentleman is the, ah, first to travel a new road. . . No, when a gentleman breaks new ground . . . . No, that’s not it either. Ah, screw it. The man I lost my virginity to is NEVER allowed to talk to me about menopause. EVER. Mine or anybody else’s.

      Thanks for reading!


  2. Ho ho. It’s actually v hard to really be funny & you succeed. I identify with your sound effects of ageing.


  3. Injury creates sound effects, it isn’t age. I have had sound effects for years, since my twenties actually and have added to them for decades. Post Menopausal? What is that? I have been something called peri-menopausal since my partial hysterectomy forty years ago and my refusal to take supplements other than vitamins. Don’t worry, it isn’t age, I promise.

    Age? What is that, just the years passing.


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