I'm a what now?
just a note about getting older
My daughter told me I was being a “Bernadette.”
What new slang was this? She’s 16; surely this was some phrase 47 year-old me was not privy to.
But no. This was not some New Slang. This was my daughter talking to me in a language she knew I’d understand: she meant Bernadette from “Where’d You Go, Bernadette?”, the novel by Maria Semple. She meant I was complaining about how stupid everyone was. She meant that she wouldn’t be surprised if I ran away to Antarctica without telling anyone. I know that’s what she meant because that’s what she said.
Smart kid, this one.
I am cranky. And I don’t even try to hide it. I am beginning to think that being cranky is just part of being a woman my age. There’s so much to be mad about and annoyed by and so many of the filters I used to use when speaking out loud are waning. Effacing, perhaps. Moving out of the way as the cervix does during labor. With the filters gone, maybe I’m giving birth to a whole new me.
Perhaps this new me will have insights old (young) me never had, like how to say things to doctors in a way that makes them believe you the first time you tell them what your symptoms are. Or what words to use to get your child to hear you the first time you tell them something. Or your husband. Or anyone. ANYONE?!
New Enlightened Me will figure out how to get everyone to follow the carline rules. She will solve the mystery of why the grocery store always forgets the bananas in my order. And she will finally discover whose dog it is that barks at exactly 9:30 every Saturday morning, waking me up on the one day I could actually sleep as late as I want to.
Or maybe I’m just a cranky old woman. What the fuck do I know. I’m too busy packing for Antarctica to figure it out right now.
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