122 “Underwater Fantasy” original watercolor by kayti sweetland Rasmussen

I don’t know about you, but I’m not getting any older, despite evidence to the contrary. The hair may be a little lighter in color, the skin a bit more flabby, and my eyeglass prescription a little stronger, but —I am not aging. Is that clear?

I had to get new eyeglasses and after seeing an old picture of Dorothy Parker in dark horn rimmed glasses, I thought it gave her a more intelligent look as opposed to grandmotherly. I asked my husband what he thought; he gave them a thumbs up. An old man sitting in the waiting room said “Scary”. I countered his attack with “They’re meant to be”.

I came upon my 25 year old bathing suit and though it still fits in a baggy sort of way, the exposed body is a little lumpy. When I bought it, my 8 year old granddaughter sneered and said that “her mommy would never wear a suit like that”. “We’ll see about that” I sneered back.

My friends however, are getting a bit on the shaky side, maybe even a little forgetful. One woman came for a Sunday afternoon bridge game with curlers in her hair. She thought we were to play the next day. She’s fine otherwise.

The popular word around town these days is “downsizing”, and because others out there are aging, or so I’m told, it’s not too soon to think about downsizing—in fact, it’s hip. After listening to friends who have done this, and in some cases moved into retirement apartments, it’s a real mess. You might say it’s asking for trouble doing this before it’s necessary, but think of the pleasure you will have clearing out desks and closets you haven’t looked at for years. My daughter cleaned out a closet and found three outfits she forgot she had—two with sales tags still on. Her sister began bargaining with her to buy one of them and she ended up with a small profit she used for a new toaster.

Several years ago my friend asked me to come help her clean her closet and get things ready for a rummage sale. Much to her sorrow she gave me a cute pair of green shoes which hurt her feet. They hurt my feet too, but they were so cute I thought it didn’t matter. The next day she arrived at 7 a.m. and wanted them back. But she got my free help in downsizing.

But you say “Wouldn’t this make you feel like you are winding down?” Not at all. Think of it as the first step to freedom. The less you have the less you worry. It doesn’t matter if you are 40 or 80 years old, we can all do with less. I may clean my studio one of these days, but I’m not aging, is that clear?

Author: kaytisweetlandrasmussen83

I am a retired fine arts teacher, sculptor/painter, writer, and a native Californian. I love my family,dogs, horses, movies, reading and music, probably in that order. I have been married forever to a very nice man who is nice to old ladies, dogs and children.

14 thoughts on “I’M NOT GETTING OLDER”

  1. I’ve been a downsizing fool the past couple of years. I think part of it’s because, once my mom was gone and I had to deal with all of her stuff, I got the technique down and just kept going. Besides, as that old philosopher, Janis Joplin, said, “Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose.” Or throw away, as the case may be.

    Besides, I’m getting older, and I know it. The more I clear out, the more details I take care of now, the less I have to worry about later. And, should it be necessary to move into a smaller place, it will be much, much easier. One thing’s for sure. I intend to outlives my kitty-cat, and once she’s no longer with me, there won’t be any more pets. I’d love to have another one, but the thought of having it outlive me bothers me. Better to perhaps take in foster kitties until I can’t care for one any more.

    I do think not having any family makes a difference in how we approach aging. There’s not going to be anyone to run interference for me, so I have to travel light and sharp!


    1. So much you say is true, and you are being wise. Out of sight–out of mind.

      The fact of a pet is disturbing to me as well, since I know for probably that Charlie will outlive us both He is a singular problem being a typical active Jack Russell. We have learned to outmaneuver him, but I don’t know many who would be able to handle him. One daughter says she will take him, but who knows?

      I’m sure not having a family does make a difference. I begin seeing which family members might step in , and which probably won’t. But as my dear aunt who just passed away at 99 used to say “You won’t be here anyway so what does it matter?”


  2. Oh, yes, for sure–I’m not aging, either! I’m resisting the downsizing trend, though. Although our house is smaller than our last one, the garden is HUGE. Some days, I have my doubts, but it brings me such joy.

    Kayti, I do admire your watercolour paintings, and this one’s no exception.


    1. We have resisted the downsizing of home, though a single home now suffices. I keep telling Dr. Advice the next move will be feet first.

      Your garden must be beautiful. We have simplified ours since my injury and I do miss caring for it.

      I’m always happy that you enjoy my paintings.


  3. This post is a riot. One of your best.
    Good God, downsizing when I am married to a pack rat? His upper garage is filled with tools, stuff, a boat we haven’t used in 15 years, a ride-on lawnmower, and so many nails, screws, bolts and who knows what else??? He has 130 ties and 30 shirts. When I met him, all he wore were gym shorts. Now he likes bow-ties and socks with dots on them.

    I am not a saver. I even throw out sentimental cards I have received within one month.

    When we are gone, if we still live on the Rancho, it will be like walking through a massive department store, hardware store, and flea market.

    I downsize; he consumes.

    How have we stayed married for all of these years?


  4. Ladybugg your reply is a riot in itself. I ride on the median strip I guess. Cards stay an unreasonable amount of time, then stack in a basket until I hardly remember what the occasion was for receiving them. Baking pans I will never use again fill garage cabinets, shoes I cannot wear. fill my closet. Then suddenly the mood changes and I rampage through the house and throw everything in sight away. Can you use a couple dozen size 6 1/2 shoes?


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