For starters, getting old. Man, had I known how ugly it was going to be, I'd have had uplifts, tummy tucks, pushes and pulls, and l-o-o-o-n-g leisurely vacations in exotic places so that every time I looked in the mirror I see somebody that looks 40 instead of (OMG I can't even bring myself to write it down).
Normally I don't look directly at myself when I look in the mirror. If I'm brushing my teeth I concentrate on looking at them. If I'm brushing my hair, I concentrate on that. New eyebrows, eyebrows; Mascara, what is left of my eye lashes. Do I ever glance lower than my first and original chin....ARE YOU KIDDING ME. I haven't looked beyond there for a long time. Makes me shudder just thinking about that...also makes me feel a little nauseated.
So, this morning I made a terrible mistake.
Me: "Frankie, how do you think I look?"
Frankie: "It's seven o'clock in the morning, how the heck do you think you look?"
Me: "I'm serious. Do I look my age?"
Frankie: "Baaaaaaaaa, hhhhhhhhaaaaaaaaa, haaaaaaaaaaaa!"
Me: "Stop that!"
Frankie seems to have taken great delight in my question. She does not seem to know I'm in crisis here. I need a confidence booster. Instead I've got Frankie practically rolling on the floor. I stand there in silence, arms akimbo waiting for her giggles to subside.
Frankie: (Holding herself tightly.) "Oh you made my sides hurt, you are so funny. Of course you look your age. You're going bald, have several chins, wrinkles, and rolls and bumps in places nobody should have."
Me: (More dejected than when this conversation started.) "Really? You're joshin' with me right?"
This brought on a second fit of laughter. Frankie dragged me to the full length mirror on the wall, behind the door of my office. She tried to force me to look. The last time I did this was when my beige suit arrived that I wore to my grandson's wedding. If you remember that incident, you will recall I looked exactly like an uncooked turkey, ready to be shoved into an oven for a several hour roast.
I swear I have not looked into that mirror since, and I certainly did not intend to now. I squeezed my eyes tightly shut and refused to look at my refection. Let's just say Frankie and I engaged in a bit of a tussle. I managed to escape her grasp.
I felt like Jonah, who found himself at the 'bottom of the mountains', wrapped in seaweed. Just let me drown. I slumped onto the sofa to sulk.
Frankie: "I'm sorry, is there any comfort that I look just like you?"
Me: "No, go away."
Frankie turned on the television, beginning to click through channels. She stopped at a commercial for one of those adult panties.
Frankie: "How old does she look?"
I shrug my shoulders.
CLICK, new channel, new commercial, two old women are discussing whether they should purchase additional insurance.
Frankie: "And, them?"
CLICK, new channel, new commercial, women discuss yogurt that will clear out your bowels, if you eat the stuff twice a day.
Frankie: "And, them?"
Me: (Still dejected) "What's your point?"
Frankie: "All these ladies have been fixed up to look great. They've been pampered, made-up, coiffured, fashion-plated to 'not' look their age. Think about how they look at seven o'clock in the morning, just getting out of bed? They look just like you. Every one of them, probably has lumps and bumps just like you. They probably have thinning hair, and a couple of chins, too. Who knows what the magic of Hollywood can do."
Me: So, you're saying?"
Frankie: "Quit being so hard on yourself, maybe if you just looked at yourself in the mirror, toe to head, head to toe you would see you're not as bad looking as you think. Come on, let's give it a go."
We walk back to the mirror. I can't do this, I really, r-e-a-l-l-y don't want to do this. Frankie gives me a good shake. Slowly I open one eye...then the other...I look only into them in the mirror. Then, I take in a deep breath and look.
AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH. Oh the horror! Oh the humanity! OMG!
Never again, never....ever...ever again.
Did I mention, I hate getting old?
Oh, and the full length mirror, it's going to be going, going, GONE.