Being female is often not very big on dignity

Written By: JoJoisms - Aug• 04•14

rutabagaHave you noticed that so much of being female is often not very big on dignity?  At my age (and with the additional symptoms of Hashimoto’s Disease, Fibro and adrenal issues), I’ve found that my dignity has taken a bigger hit.

From the time you’re a young female, you learn to be discrete each month when you are out in public…and when you buy that certain something at the store.  You hide your monthly pain from your male friends and family because you don’t want to be forced to reveal WHY certain organs feel as if someone turned the thumb screws.  And that yearly exam invites scrutiny to places your husband hasn’t even seen.

Pregnancy brings an entirely new set of delicate matters to the conversation…not to mention the invasion of your personal space whereby men of all ages feel it’s suddenly acceptable to touch your belly whether or not you’ve ever even been introduced.

Later in life, or for me at 37 after I had my son, you experience a completely new set of embarrassing symptoms that become difficult to explain without turning various shades of red…but mostly because of the hot flashes!  I remember a time in my mid 40s as I was sitting at a restaurant across from a young man and having to explain why this middle-aged lunatic kept taking off her sweater and putting it back on.  I think it was a total of twenty or thirty times during a 90 minute dinner.

Yesterday, I realized that I’ll be 52 next month.  Somehow, in my brain fogged state, I thought that August 3 was still months away from September 8th.  That revelation caused me to choke on the sunflower seeds I was munching.  The mind may be the first thing to go, but apparently, the second thing is your swallow reflex.  It wasn’t as much that the number bothered me.  Getting older is certainly better than the alternative, provided that alternative doesn’t give you the option for youthful immortality.  It’s the fact that I have no muscle tone left and that most days I already feel as if I’m in my 80s.

When I was in my early 30s, my daughter’s private school teacher thought I was one of the elementary kids from a small distance.  I was asked if I wanted the kids menu til I was in my mid 30s.  My mom looked like my sister til she was in her mid 40s.  And I always looked younger than I was…until recently.  Then my chronic illness began to catch me up.  Now my neck has a turkey waggle.  My arms wave back to myself long after I have stopped moving.  And my cheeks have traded in that youthful glow for thin, saggy laugh lines.

Today is a special day in the life of female dignity.  Yes, it’s that time again when we voluntarily put parts of our body (normally covered up by undergarments and other clothing) into a vice grip to be flattened and photographed.  Now, I don’t know what this is like for most women, but I was not well-endowed by my creator so there isn’t much there to grip.  Sooo…they stretch and tear the flesh away from the ribs in order to get it into the desired position.  Then they turn the thumb screws…and leave you there for what seems like an hour!

As someone who already suffers from fibro, arthritis and inflammation, I imagine the aftermath will be somewhat more intense than it was 20 years ago, when I had it done for the first time.  And, yes, I remember it vividly.  One doesn’t usually forget having a TortureGram.

So off I go to voluntarily surrender parts of my body to deeds that would otherwise land the perpetrator in jail under assault charges.  I’m taking along my friend, Ibuprofen. I do hope they don’t bruise.  I wonder if Smurfette started out this way…

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    I had problems like this too

  2. JoJoisms says:

    So many of us have. 🙁

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    Thank you, Margery.

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