I don’t buy pleated skirts anymore, as I’ve discovered that I am a pleated skirt.


I must admit that I’ve had my share of fears about the advancing years, but you really have to laugh at what’s going on now around getting older. Anytime I felt vulnerable about aging I would call my mother, who at the time was eighty-six-years old, to hear one of her uplifting messages. “You think that’s bad? You haven’t seen anything yet!” This always makes me feel grateful for a couple of days. Then I get sucked in again, particularly after watching a sixty-year-old movie star say she’s never had any work done, and that what you see is merely the result of years of “clean natural living”. How natural is it to have your eyebrows meet your hair? Should your face look like you just stepped out of a wind tunnel?
Magazines are loaded with ads showing underwear that is supposed to lift and firm, most of which was designed by sadists. I remember my grandmother’s undergarments, which at the time I thought I’d never be caught dead in. Now i realize she was simply a sensible woman in tune with the aging process. She didn’t want to become a hostage to her underwear. Her bras were sturdy, the straps were wide enough to hold up the Brooklyn Bridge. She used to wear big pink bloomers with plenty of room. I’m sure they could have fit a family of seven.
Nowadays, no matter what size underwear comes in, it looks like it’s made for toddlers. The thongs really get me. I’m sure some people like them and feel comfortable in them. I frankly do not what to pay for a strip of material that could start to feel like a wedgie.
Personally, I use my bizarre sense of the absurd to help with aging. I try not to bathe too often. Showers are preferable. Bathing poses the risk of seeing yourself in your entirety. I have often thought I resemble a landscape of cascading hills. In the tub, certain parts are covering up other parts. I once lost the soap in one of the parts, only to have it drop it out during one of my lectures.
I don’t buy pleated skirts anymore, as I’ve discovered that I am a pleated skirt. My bras are soft and comfortable, and going braless is akin to heaven. There is no miracle bra. Once you take it off the miracle is over. Our bodies change no matter how many visits you make to the Gym or how many Kale smoothies you drink. We need to accept and attempt to create a new paradigm for aging, that will allow us to resonate in the moment and to value our true nature. Tell yourself: In every way, I think I’m such a treasure. And that’s why I’m here—to give myself pleasure.

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At the table one never grows old.


There’s a wonderful Italian saying, “a tavola non s’invecchia”, which translates as “at the table one never grows old.” My fondest memories are recalling family time at the dinner table, eating, laughing, and oohing and aahing over anything placed before me. No one ever ate alone or multitasked while eating. Why isn’t anyone gushing about their meals anymore? Why have we lost the ability to see food as a great source of pleasure? Most often our culture compartmentalizes food into categories that are either good or bad. As a child I never heard anyone say “Don’t eat that, it’s bad for you!”. They ate everything, but in moderation. Many of my relatives lived into their late nineties.
When we eat, we should act as if we’ve been given a blessing. Who knows if our cells just might be listening to what we’re saying. Don’t attach negative connotations to your meals. If you’ve overeaten or had too many fatty, rich, or sugary foods during the day, just accept it and move on. You can make corrections the next time. Nobody, including you, needs to hear over and over how disgusted you are with yourself, how bloated you look, or how little self-control you have. It doesn’t serve you in any way, and it’s incredible boring to everyone around you.
I’m a big believer in common sense, which is probably why a friend shared with me that my success was due to the fact that I have a fantastic natural ability to detect the ridiculous. I’m often blown away because of the stuff people blindly accept about health and happiness. It is so fabricated, that the original fabric seems to have disappeared.
I think I inherited the trait from my grandmother, who definitely had Sicilian intuition. She was a bemused skeptic and never would have sat in front of the tube believing some of the ludicrous information that’s presented by the diet gurus, who travel the media circuit selling their books and potions. Yet, millions have run out to purchase one useless book after another. And I certainly have gotten caught up in the craziness myself before I was able to work with some brilliant researchers in the field of nutrition. We’re out twenty dollars or more and the author accumulates royalties and is able to buy a house in the Caribbean while we continue to struggle with our weight.
Let’s face it, we all know how to eat moderately and that we should move our bodies as much as possible.Eating while you’re driving, sitting at your desk, or walking down the street does not help to create the most important part of eating: mindfulness. Which means you are aware of what you’re eating and how much. Take the time to chew slowly, so that you can savor texture and flavors. It will help you eat less and enjoy more.