Life 7 On The Shelf, words

The wallpaper stripes say:


Mood swings: chocolate, cats, wine, Black cohosh, divorce

Weight gain: diet, exercise, bigger clothes

Hot Flushes: fan, soya, exercise, light clothes, HRT, diet, evening primrose oil

Insomnia: Remove clocks, no caffeine

Depression: clonidine, gabapentin, toy boy, acupuncture, venlafaxine

Low self-esteem: testosterone

Irritability: diet, cannabis, citalopram

Loss of libido: HRT, champagne, abstinence, testosterone

Tearfulness: friends, food, sleep




The words on the body are:


Keep young and beautiful

It’s your duty to be beautiful

Keep young and beautiful

If you want to be loved.


Ah sod off.  So what if I’m on the shelf, I’m very happy here. Last year the man I’d lived with for over 20 years told me he wanted a divorce because he didn’t love me any more. The truth was that he’d found someone younger to flatter his ego. He didn’t like the way I’d started to sag and pucker, and grow moles and hair . He said I was grey and miserable.   I was desperate and cried so hard but I couldn’t stop him. I was so lonely, dependent, insecure, ageing and invisible.


But slowly, slowly, I began to feel better. Each day I got stronger and realised that if you are unwanted, then you are also free.   I guess I took stock and evaluated my life. I was frightened at first to go out on my own and make friends. When I was younger I used to trade on my appearance and get attention because of the way I looked, but suddenly everyone just stopped looking.  A friend told me I needed a make over, with a new hair do, and visits to the gym, maybe get my nose straightened at last, but they were wrong.  Over 17 million cosmetic procedures were done in the world in 2011 but It’s silly to pretend that I can be young forever like those stupid celebrities.  17% of the UK population are women over the age of 50 but they seem faceless and  without a defined role. Why? Getting old is interesting. I think I care less about things than I used to but I have more power and serenity.   I may not be an attractive young woman any more, but I don’t need men to make me feel good about myself.  I’ve adjusted, and do you know, I think I’m ok.  Do you know, life is good and I like my shelf.

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