I am going to end up like someone's ancient grandmother, complaining incessantly (even though I promised you all I would stop doing that) about everything.
But I am having huge issues. My body sounds like a bone symphony, crackling and popping with every turn of the head (not that I can do that today, more on that later) or flick of the wrist. I've heard tell that you know someone is getting old when they make relieved groaning noises upon sitting down and effort noises upon sitting up. Well, I'm getting old then. Snap, crackle, pop, and I"m not eating cereal.
Okay, here's the thing. I lift weights. In recent years, I've started doing the larger weights, the bigger bars. Bench press, squats with the bar, dead lifts. Along with the weight lifting hipsters (I have to use Ericka's word from her query)of all about 20, I'm there on the weight room floor, making sure they put away their weights and lifting along with them.
So I have some nice definition, everything looking as good as a 46 year old woman can, basically, but I can't move. Sure, I have some great definition. Take my traps, for instance. Nice and clear and defined, but I can't move my neck today. Alas.
Along with my sore Achilles from running (that injury began in 1977), I'm a postcard for the old saw that you can't judge a book by its cover. I'm falling apart. Don't push me around because the groaning sound as I fall will be deafening.
I know, I know. Yoga. Pilates. Modern dance. All very good things, lovely classes, wonderful exercise. But there is some amazingly wonderful feeling about lifting weights. I feel like the farm woman stock I came from. I'm solid and on the earth, lifting things. In other centuries, it would have been hay or sugar or wheat or milk jugs. I could be the ox, the plow, the tractor. I am moving something, making myself stronger for--for . . . well, who knows, but there's this feeling that I could move something if I had to. Maybe it's a fight against the aging that is just seconds away, the time when the lifting will be for naught.
And the running. Yesterday, I ran from my house down to a little lake by the highway, around it, and back home. The sky was full of fog, the hour early, no one unpacking a car for a picnic yet. Coots rushed from the banks, golden wild iris on the banks. I was moving on my own volition, on the earth, show on dirt, the way it used to be before we had things to move us. It's work, true body work, especially up the hill, up, up, up to the house. And I made it. The crowd goes wild. And then it's time to rake the yard.
Even in times when I wasn't exercising as much, I loved to trim bushes, rake hills, dig massive holes for planting trees. To me, there is something about keeping the body going, this tool we have while on this planet to do things. Now there might not be as much to do, but I like the feel of the metal in my palms, the rough edge of my calluses, the pushing and strain of muscle.
So I guess I have to take the aches, the pains, the pops, and crackles. So what if I can't really turn my neck today. It will pass, supplanted by another injury, a weird cycle until I put down the plow, the hoe, the rake, the saw, the bar. I hope it's not for a long time.
Causes Jessica Inclán Supports
Women for Women International Goodwill Industries Lindsey Wildlife Museum Freecycle.org