But I’ve been doing it a lot lately. Slouching, that is. At the dinner table, while I’m driving, and especially while sitting at this keyboard day after day in a pathetic attempt to validate my stay-at-home-momness.
Can I just tell you that I used to have perfect posture? No really. I hate to brag, but it’s true. Maybe it was from taking piano lessons when I was young, but I used to sit up straight as a rod at my desk in school, all day long, while my peers slouched and slept beside me. (I’d tell you that I was also wearing a big pink bow on my head and getting straight As, but that might weaken my credibility.) I cannot vouch for my grades or obedience as an adolescent, but dang it if I didn’t sit up straight. Even my teachers commented on it. For reals.
So why do I catch myself slouching so much lately? Is it my aging spine, weakening stomach muscles, the inevitable demise of a body reaching middle age? All good ideas, but actually, I’m pretty sure I slouch because I’m lazy. Sitting up straight is harder. On some subconscious level, I-think-that-I-think that all those years of rockin’ posture then have earned me the right to slump a little in my chair now. This slightly erroneous platform wouldn’t be so dire if I didn’t find it seeping into so many other facets of my life. Somewhere over the last decade, my high-minded ideals seem to have given way to a lesser settling of sorts. I’m not sure if this is good or bad, so I thought I’d ask my three faithfuls to help me determine whether I need a course correction in my newfound attitudes. I’ll break each topic into two categories: what I thought in my twenties and what I think in my thirties. Please review, juxtapose, and summarize your position on each in the comment box below. (Oh, alright, fine. Just “like” it on facebook, ya big slouch. I never have any fun.) Here we go:
20s: It’ s terribly important! It’s fascinating. It’s about who we are, what we believe in, and where we’re going. I need to know what’s happening every day.
30s: It’s terribly important and not important at all. But it is interesting. Gets fun when an election rolls around, kind of like playoff time. Headlines are what I have time for most days.
20s: There is no excuse for letting yourself go.
30s: There are plenty of excuses for letting yourself go, and good ones at that. I consider the people I truly admire. Their fitness level has zilch to do with it.
Decorating my home
20s: My home is a reflection of my taste, creativity, and artistic eye.
30s: My home is a reflection of my pocketbook. Get over it. Nobody else has any money, either.
Cleaning my house
20s: My tidy house indicates my work ethic and homemaking skills.
30s: My tidy house indicates that my kids have been spending too much time at Grandma’s and I’ve not been spending nearly enough time writing.
20s: I love to cook for my family! I try new recipes and ingredients all the time. We need to have healthy, interesting family dinners nearly every night.
30s: I love to cook for my family–when I’m in the mood. The rest of the time, cereal or spaghetti are good. The kids are growing fine and nobody cares if there’s a side dish. Really. Not even a little bit.
How my kids are going to turn out
20s: I expect my kids get to get straight As, become musically accomplished, intellectually curious and spiritually mature.
30s: I hope my kids turn out nice, and marry someone nice. Especially the latter; it’s a always crapshoot, no matter what a parent tries to do. Don’t tell me you haven’t seen it.
Whether or not I’m happy.
20s: I need to ask myself, every day, if I’m really happy. I need to make sure I’m happy. It’s not only normal to be happy, it’s my duty. Otherwise, I’m lazy/ungrateful/un-spiritual/you name it.
30s: I don’t have time to check my Happiness Pulse every day, and I’m not all that interested when I do. Productivity, compassion, and a little fun are what I try to work into my life. (Read: a lot of fun, with a little productivity and compassion thrown in for cover. Who am I kidding?)
So tell me: Am I getting wiser with age, or are my moral convictions merely weakening like the muscles in my ribcage? And are any of you experiencing this inverted outlook on life as well? I gotta tell ya, I’m liking the inverted position a heckuva lot better. Call it lowering my standards or just getting real; either way, I’m breathing a whole lot easier these days. And that’s quite an accomplishment, since I’m usually slouching.