Tuesday, February 22, 2011

This is what 55 looks like...

I have always been conscious of what I look like in a bathing suit. Always. At 15, when my body was 'bikini' worthy, at 28, when I was 'triathlon' worthy, at 35 when my body was 'two babies' worthy, and, well, you get the picture.

In my 30s I made peace with it all, even spending many summer days on the clothing optional beach.....it was 'ok' surrounded by the love of family, and strangers.

In my 50s I delighted in hot-tub parties with my dear, dear women friends. Naked in the hot-tub, trying to be 'ok' that my body was not what it once was, what it ever was.

But then, last night, something amazing happened. I just let it all go. I am 55. I am a woman who carries weight, in the metaphoric and literal sense. People who know me know that I am 55 and I am a not a slender woman. So, why would I balk at enjoying a hot tub because I am not slim.

I wanted to go to the hot-tub last night. I was tired, and had had a long, headachey day. I was heading with two good girl-friends. We were going to the hot-tub - just the girls.

But then, I got there, and there was, gasp, a man there! But, ya know what? I really wanted to go into that hot-tub, and I didn't have my bathing suit....so, what the hell, I just went for it. I just stood there, took off my clothes, and walked into the hot-tub. I don't think it was a surprise to anyone that this 55 year old woman, whom they have seen for years, in her clothes, has a 55 year old body.

And it was wonderful. I was wonderful.
And besides,
I am not a slender woman,
I am rubenesque.
So there!

4 comments:

  1. Ooops - actually - it's D'Arcy who posted that last note from Greig's computer...

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  2. I did a series of posts on body image, but as a man talking with women about it and how we men viewed and perceived (different actions you know, not the same as some people would define them) our wives bodies. I tried to be as truthful as possible and sympathetic too. I am so pleased and proud of you in the way you were able to handle this hot tub incident. Age has a way of delivering "what the hell is it to me" moments at some point and we just go for it. I hope you felt empowered.

    Let me provoke your sense of propriety and any vestige of sexism you may have with this question though. As an educator, I think you will see the value of it being asked and discussed in a group. What if you had already been in the hot tub, clothed or otherwise, and a man had come up and done the same? How would that have then played out. We will assume he makes to sexual intimations directed at you or others.

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    Replies
    1. I have been in that situation many times and it never bothered me. Nudity, male and female, is wonderful. This was about my own issues with others seeing my body naked, not about nakedness per se. It would have been a non-issue if it was a stranger in the hot-tub, but it was someone I knew on a social level. I was with two other women. One wore her bathing suit, one didn't . Then later another colleague joined us. At first he was surprised, but then shed his clothes and joined us.

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