When Your Body is Having a Mid Life Crisis

This is a safe place, right?

I mean, we’ve talked about everything from sex, to mothering, to bikini-waxing, and beyond. We all know each other pretty well by know, don’t we?

Actually, now that I think about it, it does seem like you guys know a lot more about me than I know about you.

So if you could each go ahead and email me a short essay revealing your deepest desires and most embarrassing moments, that’d be great.
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Cool, now that we’ve agreed on that, there’s something else I’ve been wanting to talk to you about. Come close and huddle in, because this one is, how shall we say….one of my “less delicate” posts.

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I should start by telling you that I recently turned 35.

On the one hand, life is beautiful. I have a husband who’s loved me well for 15 years and he knows the exact movie quote that will communicate his feelings to me in any given situation (because, priorities! ??).

I have two healthy, spunky kids who fill me up and empty me clear out 10 100 times in a day.

I have a local community of friends, a dream I’m working towards, and Jesus by my side.

Great. Grand. Wonderful.

Nothing to complain about here.

Unless you count the totally unexpected and seriously WHACK things that are starting to happen to my mid-30’s body. 

Things are changing y’all, and they’re changing fast.

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5 years ago my sister informed me that I needed to own one of those mirrors that sit on your bathroom counter. You know, those really big, magnifying mirrors with a daylight lamp?

The things I’m beginning to see in that mirror are very disconcerting.

For instance, those soft, little hairs that grow in the indiscernible space where your chin meets your neck. Those hairs used to be harmless. They used to be soft, blonde, and just blended into their surrounding area undetected.

Oh, but not anymore.

Now those hairs grow about 1/2 an inch too long and dance in the sunlight screaming, “Look at me! Look at me!”

Guys, WHAT IS UP WITH THOSE HAIRS?

The only time they’re visible is when you’re in the car or under the harsh fluorescent lighting of a Target fitting room, but never when you’re in the safety of your own home and tweezer-adjacent.

They’re still soft and blonde, but why in the actual world are they so long now? It’s nigh on impossible to get a good angle for plucking those hairs. You’re gonna need to call in some backup. Like a sister, a best friend, or your small child, but only if they can be trusted to keep their mouth shut the sinister things they’ve seen under your chin.

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See!☝?Tina gets it.

Although, when you’re Tina Fey you could grow a full beard and fully get away with it so I’m not even sure why she’s bothering. (Okay just to clarify, I doubt Tina really shaves her face. And neither do I.)

But WHY is are we not talking about this? This is real, y’all. And it is frightening.

Adding insult to injury, the hair on top of my head, the only place where it is truly welcome, seems to be rapidly thinning. I’ve never had thick hair, but now I’m reduced to what my friend Mel, refers to as “toddler hair”.

It’s just limp and static-y, and no matter how I try to style it I just look like a kid who’s played on the playground for too long.

Like, really? Really mid-30’s body? You’re gonna play me like that? If you’re going to sprout weird hairs at least let them be on my head.

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We’re not here to talk about the forehead wrinkles, or the weird eye skin, or the slower metabolism, because there’s no real shock there. I mean, we don’t LIKE any of it, but it’s only to be expected.

I said goodbye to my speedy metabolism a long time ago. I’m fairly certain it’s taking a vacation and may never return. It’s run off with My Children’s Naps who no longer call or send flowers, and they’re both on a beach somewhere by now, drinking a corona, and laughing at my plight.

Its fine. img_0155

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We ARE going to talk about the other stuff. The stuff that no one tells you.

Like your height will shrink and your feet will grow.

I went in for a physical last month and they informed me that I have indeed, SHRUNK. I am 5’5. I’ve always been 5’5.

Except apparently now I’m not.

Now I’m just plain old 5’4 and feeling very robbed.

In fact, I don’t care for this information at all and I don’t receive it.

img_1488Adversely, your feet may begin growing at a hobbit’s pace (by that I mean, they’ll be big like a hobbit, not move at a hobbit’s pace, which could be fast or slow- I don’t really know, because I slept through most of the Lord of the Rings movies).

I always had dainty little 5.5 sized feet. Then they grew to a size 6. Now I’m a 6.5 or 7 depending on the shoe. I don’t care so much what size my feet are, I’m just a little weirded out that they’re growing at such an alarming pace.

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If I keep this up with the weird hairs and the feet I really will look like a hobbit by the time I’m 45. Can’t dwell on that one too long though, because I’ve got bigger problems now.

Like, Post-Shower-Sweats.

I used to be a cold blooded person. I used to be one of those girls that could walk around all delicate and shivery, pulling my sweater around me and snuggling up next to my husband who would shield me from “the cold”. I used to sweat only when I was nervous or when I was working out.

Now there is no “cold.” Now my body has an internal thermostat that is always set on a level somewhere between “Face Melter” and “Raging Inferno”.

Now I sweat just because it’s Tuesday.

I sweat when I sleep. I sweat when the sun hits the side of my face in the car. I sweat when I think about sweating. I sweat when I get embarrassed. I sweat when I’m surprised. I sweat when I’m hungry. I basically sweat every 5 minutes no matter what the conditions.

And not just armpit sweat.

Now we’ve got boob sweat, upper lip sweat, lower back sweat, and when things get really bad, stomach sweat.

But worst of all these are the post-shower sweats. There’s nothing worse than getting out of a nice warm shower, attempting to put on your makeup, and having to stop and fan yourself in front of an open window in 20 degree weather because you are sweating for no good reason. 

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I don’t understand this phenomenon. Is this just some kind of unnecessary training for menopause?

Lastly, we’ve got the cropping up of weird food allergies.

My friend Janna woke up one day to find herself allergic to everything from eggs, to garlic, to beef. Just out of the blue, she had to say goodbye to some of her favorite foods or suffer the consequences.

I recently became allergic to 90% of all fruits. One day I’m eating blueberries like it’s my job and the next day if I so much as touch one to my lips I swell up like Martin Short in Pure Luck when he gets stung by that bee.

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I can now only eat the fruits you peel befor you eat them- so basically none of the fun ones. My mid-30’s body decided it’s had enough of the good fruits. We’ll just stick to the dull flavors for the next 50 years or so.

I guess it could be worse. I could be allergic to burritos.

If that day ever comes, you can find me jumping off a cliff somewhere. (And all God’s people said, “Amen.”)

People of the Internet! Tell me your things!

Are weird things happening to you too?

I’m feeling a little vulnerable here and my body is having a mid-life crisis, so if you’ll excuse me, I’m just going to go put on some mom-jeans, a mock-turtleneck/ crocheted vest combo, and just embrace the process.

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9 thoughts on “When Your Body is Having a Mid Life Crisis

  1. Courtney

    Girl, I am right there with you! I turned 35 last May and I kid you not, the day before my bday I went in to have my eyebrows threaded (because waxing is so old school, threading is the way to go now-or so my millennial 20-something niece who lives with me says, but I digress…) and the girl leans me back in the chair, studies my face and says, “And will we be taking care of your upper lip today too?” Welcome to 35.

  2. Debbie Burdick

    I would love to tell you it gets better. … Really. I would. At this point I would be safer saying, if there was ever a point at which you thought you might possibly have a handle on your own self, from appearance to conduct, I hope you really enjoyed that point and the ten minutes or so it might have lasted. It’s better to have a handle on your sense of humor, because sometimes that is absolutely all you have to work with. There’s a phrase I find myself using a lot: “Nobody told me it would be like this!” And then the hormones show up on the scene and assure you: 1) you are the only one who has ever experienced this, ever; 2) life as you know it is over, and this IS your circus, and we ARE your monkeys; and 3) everything is HUGE, from the hairs under your chin (pray yours stay blonde, is about the best advice I can offer on that) to the undergarments that Victoria never imagined keeping Secret. (Dear Lord please do not let this comment ever show up on my “general consumption” news feed.) Welcome, dear Amber, to the “new normal.” Whatever that even IS.

  3. Jenn

    Um….??Yes to all of that! I was totally distracted in my mid 30s to realize most of that, but I hit 40 a few months ago and I was like WHAT IN THE WORLD HAPPENED TO MY BODY?!?! Skin tags? Ew! Random long body hairs? Check! And yes, the after shower sweats are THE WORST! I mean, I just got all clean. What gives? Not looking forward to the shrinking thing, I’m already short. Let’s just all move down to Hobbitville in New Zealand!

    1. Christine

      Oh yes – Skin Tags! What glamour. Who the hell came up with that? I’m 49. Everything you said, and more.

  4. Teresa ann Coelho

    OHMYGOSH, this is some funny stuff. We just gotta laugh right? Lord have mercy on us women, it is not easy being us. I never understood why a man’s body doesn’t go through as many changes as ours? I guess we could be like the world and demand equality. NAH…I like being a women, its a pain in the ass but theres nothing like it.

  5. Rebekah Tesone

    This is nothing just wait for the “50” to hit! Look at this way you have 15 years till the next rung on the ladder!

  6. Theresa Boedeker

    Amber, so true, and you didn’t even mention it all. Thanks for the healthy laugh at our self, body, and aging. All these people keep telling me not to get old because it is the pits, but as that isn’t possible, let’s keep encouraging each other, because we are all in the same sinking boat.

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