Awkward Age…


It's soooooooooo gorgeous outside my front door. Not hot or
cold...balmy is a good word. Just a steady soft rain that has
continued all through the night and a bright sky but no direct
sunshine. Perfect weather to write. It's my day off so I will be
doing exactly that after I share a few minutes with you.

When I was a little girl, I was so shy that I couldn't tinkle with my
mother in the room and being the good Mommy that she was my mother
would never leave a little bitty child alone in a bathroom....

Lordy, I might have drowned in the toilet or cut myself playing with
my Daddy's razor. :) Or so she said. (I was such a well behaved
child I think I've only had naughty ideas since my daughter taught
them to me.) My little girl had a too fertile imagination and
penchant for actually doing the insane things that you shudder in
horror that your child might get in to... ha...ha...

I grew up to be a worry wart like my mother, and thanks to her, I
also placed this well meaning curse on my daughter. (Sorry baby girl!)

I too turned on the water faucet to speed up nature and drown a
little shy girls timidity. :) (except my daughter has never had a
shy bone in her body...she just like sitting on the potty and
chatting with Mommy...such a social child...I would give anything if
she were still that little still...I miss her so much)

I would be miserable visiting Niagra Falls...which may be why I've
never rushed there.... :) I do have a waterfall in the Ozarks that I
used to sit behind and write, totally hidden from the world and my
brutish hubby...

It was so peaceful...One place I could be totally alone with my
thoughts and concentrate for a few precious hours...The sound there
was very similar to the rain today...strong... endless...

I laid here last night...unable to sleep...Enthralled as I have
always been by nature...with my front door open...The street light
illuminated silver droplets imitating mercury as they slid heavily
hugging the windowpane...

I couldn't rest...having the urge to answer another call of
nature...ha...ha...I silently apologized to my daughter who has
thanked me recently for that same curse....when her husband took her
fishing at a wonderful resort with his mom and dad and all she heard
for three days was the swoosh of rushing water and rapids...

I think last night was a fitting payback.... :) But I'm still
debating a fitting payback for my own mother!

As I lay there for hours daydreaming, a million topics rushing
through my mind...I realized a truth...something you don't
consciously debate...

I am at that awkward age...

I have spent my entire life at an awkward age...

You know the transition period from one stage of life to another...

You go through it in babyhood...when your too little to play with the
big kids and then one day you are the big kid and the babies are too
childish...

Then your in puberty...too young to consummate your wild erotic urges
and too aroused to listen to adult reason...

But there is that one guy you're in love with who acts all macho and
when you call his bluff runs like the baby he still is...leaving your
virginity in tact...

Or was that one of God's angels protecting you from your own folly?

Then you're grown...struggling to ingratiate yourself into society
and you're just a puny peon...no matter how talented, energetic,
ambitious you are...

You are treated like a baby again....Slowly you work yourself up the
ladder...Older people treating you with disrespect and younger people
calling you maam...(don't you feel like bitch slapping the latter?)

You are Mommy and everyone and their pets come to you for
everything...You learn to earn the bread while your baking it,
serving and cleaning up the crumbs...You're lost in the crowd...

The anchor that no one notices...You wear so many caps that some days
you have several on top of each other and mostly on backwards running
to get everything done and passing out too tired to realize you didn't
take care of yourself...

Then one day you wake up and all that you worked so long and hard
for...is done...Earned!

You own the house...the furniture is worn out from too many
teenyboppers and their heavy boots or rambunctious behavior...so you
give it to the kids as they move out and start looking to see what
you might like as a single person..not that you know what you
actually like after all those years of being told what you had to
have for others...

You're hubby forces the sale of the home you have worked so hard for to secure
your future in old age...taking his share to re-live
his youth with a younger woman...He calls up up two years later
complaining, begging you to come back to him, to cook and clean and make love
like a real woman and have an intelligent conversation...he's so
tired of raising her...

You snicker and say..."Call your mother!" hanging up the phone
gleefully...realizing you ARE free...from this moment forward its
YOUR life...Anything YOU choose to make it...It has taken awhile to
quit crying with a broken heart over all that you so lovingly
nurtured who deserted you and left you old and weary...suffering an
empty nest and divorce alone...

But you have arrived...Now you have their excitement while you move forward
in to your own dreams...that you have waited forever to make
realities...

The children call you on cell phones late at night from several
states over when the minutes are free...Still waking you up at three
am..crying...but this time not hungry for a bottle or miserable with
a wet bootie...or burning up with a fever...They are at that awkward
age you are so glad you finally outgrew and you are sympathetic...
knowing it's the best of times and the worst of times for them too...

I'm at that awkward age I dreamed of all my life...as a little child
longing to have control over my life and a young mother and wife
wishing for things to be honed and smoothly flowing...

The time in life when I have only me to take care of, time to sleep,
can eat whatever I want and don't have to worry about getting
pregnant. The kids are adults and responsible for their own
choices.

My job is done...

Like all middle aged people....who have transitioned between empty
nest and are not yet a grandparent...whose own parents have become
their children...

I am at that awkward moment in time when I am too mature to
experiment with my life like I did in my youth...thinking I was
indestructible....and too young to sit in a rocker and await death...

There is a whole world to be explored...I finally know who I am and
what is most important to me and I have become picky about who I
share with even in friendship and how much I give ....

I don’t have the energy to waste on futile ventures or the time to
ponder mysteries that will never unfold...I have evolved in to that
moment in time when I live in the present and realize it might be the
only day I ever have....

I am peaceful...as the rain on the top of the tin roof that lulled me
finally to sleep in the wee hours...

But my spirit...like my bladder refuses to be ignored...as nature
urges me to answer the call...

m a young woman trapped in a body that is changing with gravity and
preparing itself for old age...

My back hurts when I wake up and there is no one to massage it...My
hands ache every moment with arthritis...but I will not stop writing
or sewing or doing all the things I love...I know that they will be
throbbing at the end of the day ....but that if I continue using
them..they will loosen up after I've had my second cuppa hot
cocoa...and get them warmed up....

I will not let pain turn my smile inward...or dim the glow in my eyes
as I look out on a new day...

I am at that awkward age...when I still dream not of prince
charming...but of my other half...my twin soul...sharing the rest of
the rest...That one who was born in heaven with me...and whose love
will be consummated here on earth together...

Yes, I do still believe there is someone made for each of us...but as
we age...what are the odds of meeting him and will he be too jaded to
open his heart and arms to welcome me?

I plan for travel and make my dreams in to reality with each class I
take...learning to bake professional decorate cakes...or paint with
oils...which is far different than acrylics...lately I’ve been ball
room dancing with a stranger who is fast becoming the most wonderful
dance partner I could ever have asked for...We are companions in
fulfilling a mutual dream even though we never talk outside of
class...

I'm learning that you can have your dreams...Maybe not the way you
envisioned them...sometimes even better....

I am growing in ways that I dreamed of as a child...Old enough and
young enough....Free...to live...

I woke up this morning....thinking of a million things I'm grateful
for...Most of all for the love I've known...

I giggled as I ran to the powder room...miserable from the sounds of
the rain in my sleep...Happily...Knowing that my mother loved me so
much...that she never let me sit alone so she found a way to hurry me
along... when someone else who didn’t care might have rushed off and
left me there...

I smiled in the distance to my daughter...whose voice is the last I
hear every nite on the phone...charmed with her laughter which still
rings in my heart from last night as she whispered sleepily.."I love
you Mommy, sweet dreams and have a beautiful tomorrow."

I love being at this awkward age...Don't you?

Copyright © 2001 by Darlene Purcell  All rights reserved.
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