The Dreaded Swimsuit Season
It has arrived. Summer is finally here! Oh Joy …oh wait… I have to wear a swimsuit. Not so great! “Yay menopause!”
When I was younger, I could not wait for summer. I thought nothing of jumping into the water and even less of coming out drenched and dripping. I was young!
Not so now! These days, every step has to be planned well in advance when I think about going to the beach. I carefully choose a swimsuit that promises to restore some semblance of past glories, or if it can’t, at least to hide some of the lumps and bumps that have made their presence known in menopause. Jumping into the water with abandon is not on the cards. Jumping out of the water, dripping, is not, repeat not, something I am likely to be seen doing these days.
The sarong is now my friend. It wraps itself around me and with infinite kindness hides the spider veins, the cellulite, the less than perfect skin tone.
Swimsuit manufacturers continually come up with new and improved versions that promise to make your tummy look smaller or give the illusion of a more buxom disposition. The unfortunate fact is that no swimsuit can do everything you wish it to. It may display your cleavage to maximum advantage but leave you unable to breathe, or shape your hips into more of an hourglass but leave your legs to counter the illusion at the precise point where help is needed most.
The Mirror in Menopause
I’m telling you, getting older is not a walk in the park. When I look in the mirror, I do not see the youthful image I have of myself in my mind’s eye. What I do see, however, is someone who can laugh at the trials and tribulations of trying to squeeze into a swimsuit. Someone who understands that every line and wrinkle is evidence of a life well-lived, and who measures life not by how awesome she looks in a bikini, but on what she built and achieved in her life; the people she cared for, the friendships she nourished, the work that she engaged in and the truths she stood up for.
I was taught that matter can neither be created nor destroyed. That may be so for other matter, but fat is the obvious exception. It can certainly be created and rather quickly at that, but it cannot be destroyed. If you push it out of the way from one place, it pops up in another.
Frankly, in the grand scheme of things, does it really matter that much? It is, of course, important to stay healthy for our own wellbeing, but we have earned the right to love ourselves as we are and to demand that people see us for the glorious women we are whether or not we are wearing our Spanx!