Monday, January 10, 2011

Your best body is the one you've got right now

Since I'm writing about body issues this month, I just have to share this story.

When I went to New York City with my Mom and Aunt Mary, I knew people would mistake me for one of their sisters.  It happened the last time we travelled together and we do look alike. I vowed not to let it bother me - even though I'm of a completely different generation.

Mary, Jane and Marjie in NYC.
It was John Lennon's birthday too.
Sure enough, as we stepped into the elevator at the Lucerne Hotel on 79th and Amsterdam, an orange-haired woman examined our faces and pronounced, "You girls must be sisters."

"We are!" trilled my mother, Jane, delightedly. Since we were celebrating her 70th birthday, I just shrugged and smiled.

Other than the minor blow to my ego, our trip was hugely fun. We went to the Top of the Rock, toured the magnificent MoMA, and took a ferry out to Ellis Island. The weather over Columbus Day was gorgeous and the tourist attractions were packed. It took forever to get through the security checks because both Mary and Jane's hip replacements set off the metal detectors and they had to be scanned individually by a wand-wielding security guard.

"Just enjoy this time," advised Jane, as I stood waiting impatiently. "When you get your hip replaced, you'll have to do this too."

My hips are fine, I huffed to myself. Just because I'm related to you chicks doesn't mean I'm destined for orthopedic surgery. To prove my point, I stalked through Ellis Island like a lioness, reveling in the supple glide of my natural hip sockets.

We retreated to our suite at the Lucerne to relax before dinner and, as I uncorked a bottle of chardonnay, I could hear peals of  laughter and snorts coming from the bedroom. My mom and aunt were cracking each other up as they commiserated about their aches and pains. I stomped to the bedroom door.

"Oh come on," I said, exasperated. "It can't be that bad. Surely some things must get better with age! Tell me about them."

They thought hard.

"Well, you don't have to shave very often," offered Jane.

"At least not your body," said Mary, chortling. "And your underwear stays cleaner."

"Don't say that!" shrieked my mother. And off they went again, howling with laughter. They were having such a good time, I couldn't help but join in with a giggle and a snort or two myself (must be a family trait.)

That New York City weekend with my mom and aunt was like a time-warped look in the mirror; a familial peek into my future 20 years from now. If I'm like Jane and Mary, I might end up with artificial joints, sore feet, and a random whisker or two. But if I inherit their sense of humor, I'm sure I'll enjoy life to the fullest.

In the meantime, I'm going to appreciate everything I can about the body I've got now. I may not be young or thin, I may have high cholesterol - but I can do anything! I can do a cartwheel and dance and play three sets of tennis and run up stairs and wear high heels.

And most importantly, my hips and I sail right through airport security, baby.

Note: This isn't the first time I've written about Jane & Mary. Click here to read their words of wisdom about life in post I wrote three years ago.

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