Sunday, August 05, 2007

Regrets of the age challenged or things I will never do again

Yesterday Duck and I had a two hour drive to and from Sweet Home, Oregon for the annual Oregon Jamboree. Three days of country music in the Cascades. Ducky is a little bit country and I’m a lot a bit head banging rock n’ roll. I gave Ducky tickets to Saturday’s music because he’s a big Lori Morgan fan. Because she had canceled twice before on the Oregon Jamboree she was stuck in the two o’clock time slot just after Hal Ketchum and right before (this will show you how pissed they were at her) Bucky Covington of American Idol fame. Bucky and his brother Rocky sucked. We left before Aaron Tippen and Trisha Yearwood. But I am way off track.

During our long drives we tend to have those deep conversations that couples tend to have when there is nothing better to do. It’s either that or talk sex. Which we did. But that came later. So our discussion turned to midlife crisis, which led to things we will – okay I will – never do again. Both topic appropriate at our ages, Ducky is the speed limit, and I’m 51. I don’t think either one of us has really faced a mid life crisis (I always tell him I am his midlife crisis) but I have begun having those thoughts.

Okay, I’ve had them for a while, but the thoughts have become deeper and more prolific in recent memory. I don’t regret getting older, as I am wont to say, “I’ve worked hard for every one of those years.” But I’ve begun to realize of late some of the things I loved to do in the past that I will never do again.

I will never surf again. I will never experience the thrill of trying to shoot a curl and survive up right, heart racing in joy, the power of a wave gliding and thrusting me and my board up and forward. Nor feel the wind drying my body, right before I am slam-dunked back into the ocean. I will never wear a bikini again (the world is thankful for that last part – shoot if I keep growing I’ll never wear a bathing suit again.)

I will never again experience Girl Scout camp. For nine years my parents sent me, for two weeks, to Skyland Ranch in the San Jacinto Mountains of Southern California. Heaven. I loved Girl Scout Camp – hated the snakes – loved the camp. The girls, the singing, the hiking, swimming, and the oatmeal (it’s the only place I’ve liked oatmeal that didn’t come out of a bag with dried apple bits mixed in.) It is where I got my name – Tanglefoot (I use this moniker when I blog at Jenny T Partridge.)

I will never again knock out my opponent with a well timed hipcheck, the flip side to that is I will never have to feel the wind knocked out of me when I’ve been sent into the rail – cry when my finger has been run over (and yes it fucking hurts), or feel the power build as I skate the oval. Damn I had great thighs when I was younger.

I will never own a horse again. I’m pretty certain of this one. The last time I rode a horse (two years ago) I had to have a boost to get on the poor thing. My thighs just aren’t what they use to be, of course they are hefting a 100 pounds more than they use to. Now if I went back to the gym I’d be able to squat two hundred within two months. But get my fat butt back on a horse, hmmm. Poor horsey. Of course ex number one says I am invited to ride anytime I want – he’s been teaching our grandson to ride this summer, I am envious.

I will never ride a dirt bike again. My first, true boyfriend Ronnie, (of the black lashes and bluest eyes) use to take me riding all the time. When we first started dating I don’t think he realized I rode. We had a Suzuki 125 (small, but just right for me) Ronnie and I went to this great dirt park, somewhere between La Mirada and La Habra, that had fabulous hills, dips, and jumps. Other times we’d go with his step dad and brothers to Imperial Lake bed and ride. I loved splashing through the arroyos and speeding a long the hardpan.

I will never get to walk the pier eating donut holes with my grandfather again. God, I miss him. As a child and into my teens, I would spend the occasional weekend with my grandparents. They were extremely special moments for me. My grandparents lived in Balboa, so it was the beach during the day, dinner at Dilman’s at night, and these incredible morning walks with my grandfather, Chappy. He was awesome, my best friend, my hero. When I got older it was the memories he gave me that made me want to be the best grandparent I could possibly be, to want to give Ben these incredible memories that will last him his lifetime. While I may not get to walk with my grandfather, eating donut holes, on the Balboa pier, I do get to build those memories and moments with Ben. When ever I smell a warm, rich pipe tobacco I know my grandfather is with me, and I talk to him frequently.

I will never feel a baby kick inside of me again. Shit, for as uninterested as my girls seem, I will never hold another grandchild n my arms again. Psam gave me Ben, you would think Miseray and Grace would give me one each. I’m a thinking it ain’t gonna happen.

Never will I regret getting old. Who wants to go back and relive sixteen, eighteen, (shit twenty four was a good year) again? Not I. But there are things that my muscles still remember, experiences that will never happen again, first that have long since past. I look forward to the future, I don’t live in my glory days. But just sometimes, on those long drives during deep conversations, my mind remembers joys of younger days when my muscles memories twitch at what was back then…and then ache.

Ducky on the other hand thinks about people he will never do again.



JulieAnn Henneman said...

I can relate to this. A poignant and awesome post. I have been bitten by the nostalgia bug lately, too. Very wistful. Glad to see that for you it hasn't resulted in ennui. Well, maybe sometimes, eh?


CV Rick said...

Very nicely written . . .

My boy's a teenager and this summer he beat me in a footrace. He didn't just beat me, he had time to stop and turn around before I finished. It's finally hit me that age has effects . . . . and that I'm not the same cocky athlete I once was.

Now, when do we get our Buffet discounts?

Cele said...

JulieAnn I get that way on occasion and usually don't regret the things in my past that will stay past. But the surfing and my grandfather, those are hard.

Rick you can run? you are my hero. My thighs already look like I've gotten my discount coupons, so anything that resembles running from me, is really jiggling fat.

Sister Mary Lisa said...

Great nostalgic post, Cele. I love it.

CV Rick said...

I can run . . . well, could run. I went to college originally on a track scholarship as a sprinter.