Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Forty-Two Things, Part One

There once was a gal middle-aged
Who wanted her psyche assuaged.
Hormones, anxiety, not enough piety....
From life made her feel disengaged!

On my last blog I had a link to 100 Things About Me...that was an interesting exercise. Since I will be 42 in November, I figured I'd use that number and write an updated version. I feel like a totally different person than I did in 2004 when I write the original list, so I will be interested to see if there is any overlap at all. I have a feeling this one may be a bit more negative.

1) I am physically in the best shape of my life, but that has shown me that the problems I have with my appearance are almost totally psychological - because I am no more comfortable in my own skin and still suffer from all the same insecurities.

2) I have gotten over my eternal hatred and distrust of television. I am still not the type to sit mindlessly on the couch channel surfing, but I have spent hundreds of hours in the past year and a half watching every episode of Six Feet Under, Dexter and House. I am about to go back (thanks to Netflix) and revisit a few shows from the early 90s, literally the last time I watched television at all. I have been pleasantly surprised to see how good television can be on both artistic and psychological levels.

3) Sometimes the main emotions I experience are guilt and resentment.

4) By guilt I don't mean theological guilt, but rather guilt from failing to live up to whatever unrealistic expectations I have put on myself, or think other people have of me. More often than not I am wrong about these things being important at all.

5) I can't focus on a million things at once like I could in my middle 30s...I won't accomplish anything requiring more focus than dishwashing if I also have to tend to children. This means I don't get all that much accomplished in the creative or intellectual realms these days.

6) I let my 16 year old Moppet read and watch things I never thought I would when she was 14. I don't think I realized the difference between the maturity level of 14 and 16 year olds. I think it has actually been a benefit rather than a detriment.

7) I have become a lot less outspoken. In a way this is good, since I used to be the freaked-out type of person who could talk or argue something into the ground for the sake of debate. But in other ways I think it shows that I feel more easily defeated and less sure that I have anything interesting to say.

8) I finally bought a baking stone and peel last year, after wanting one for about a decade. And baking on a super-hot stone really does make a HUGE difference in the quality of pizza and artisan breads.

9) I have always felt like I am sitting on the outside observing life, rather than living it, and this is getting more pronounced as I get older. I do this with my own psyche too - I sit and analyze myself like I am a psychiatrist, like That Neurotic Person On The Couch is some patient and not me.

10) I stopped drinking caffeinated coffee about 3 months ago, and I truly had no idea how much of a drug caffeine is, and how much it affected me physically and psychologically. I was totally clueless about my normal sleep patterns. I still drink some caffeine in iced tea every few days, but I know if I drank a triple-shot non-decaf latte now I would feel like I was on speed.

11) Though this whole list probably reflects it - I will say specifically that my 40s have (so far) not been the positive experience I expected. I have had more anxiety, more depression, less confidence and more physical problems.

12) I used to think I would never take any kind of hormone therapy, but since I learned about bio-identical hormones I have reconsidered that. With as bad as you can feel through peri-menopause and menopause, I now think that even with possible risks, it would be better to live a few years less and be happier. I actually read a forum for peri- and menopausal woman on a regular basis. It's hard to believe I am old enough to need to do that.

13) One of my goals is to look good into my older years...maybe not quite as good as 73 year old Ernestine Shepherd here, but as good as I can get.

Sitting here letting my rear spread out will not get me closer to that goal. It's time for me to work out. I have a new Kelly Coffey-Meyer DVD I am looking forward to doing for the first time.

Stay tuned for the next exciting installment of Forty-Two Things.


  1. I have FINALLY settled into a routine of working out and I love it!!! I have to say Yoga is my favorite but I do like my spin class :)

  2. so glad you're posting again!