This is a story about my new shower curtain liner. And age and agility.
I’m sixty nine and I’m proud of my age. I don’t mind a few crinkles around my eyes or even that things are not necessarily in their original locations (ah, gravity). I don’t think that 60 is the new 40. On the other hand, I don’t believe that 60 is old. I don’t think age defines what we can or can’t do, but maybe sometimes it’s good to be a tad more careful.
So why is this about a shower curtain liner? My old liner had gotten dingy and seemed to plan to stay that way, so I went out and got a new one. No problem – I didn’t mind having no shower curtain overnight because the drying rack was in the tub (yes, some of us still do hand laundry).
Fast-forward to the next morning. I was all set to jump into the shower. No problem – I moved the drying rack. Then realized that I hadn’t put up the shower curtain.
OK – this is easy, right. Not so much, it turns out. At 40, I easily balanced on the rim of the tub. This morning, pre-breakfast, it made me shaky. And dizzy. OK – stepladder. Not as much of an improvement as I’d hoped, but it works. There’s still the balance issue, but at least there’s a flat surface.
Now, somehow, I’m not lining up the hooks correctly. And they seem bent on defying me and twisting in every possible direction. And I’m getting tired of stretching. It takes three tries to have them in the right spaces. Not necessarily a standing on a stepladder task, perhaps. This is taking a lot longer than I’d expected. Should have considered the ladder.
Task completed. But it reminds me that 60 is not the new 40. While long walks and dancing stay on the agenda, maybe there will be fewer substitutions for actual ladders. Or – I have more money than I did at 40 – I can pay someone to climb and lift and carry.
I know that some 90 year-olds run marathons. I wouldn’t have been able to do that at 20 and I don’t want to now. A friend can still do a cartwheel at 70. Now that’s something I aspire to. And maybe even go nyah-nyah – bet you thought I couldn’t do it AT MY AGE afterwards.
There are all kinds of distinctions. And just because at 25 I didn’t have the sense to realize that I couldn’t easily lug a 30 pound turkey a mile doesn’t mean I haven’t developed a little judgment over the decades.
I believe in shopping carts and the occasional car service when I can’t just get something delivered. And I believe in shopping online.
I’m saving my energy for the good stuff – vacations, parties, nights out with friends, long walks. And I’m admitting that there are both things I don’t want to do and things I can’t easily do. And, more and more often, I think I’ll choose not to do those things.
Hey – I earned it!