A real thigh shocker came after I decided it was time for me to start stretching every day so I could remain young and flexible.
For my birthday a friend gave me a book on yoga postures. What caught my attention was the Salutation to the Sun, a sequence of stretches I could do first thing in the morning and feel I got most of the muscle groups. I started this routine in late fall and continued into the spring. Because it is fairly cold in my house I had been wearing my sweats. Then the warm weather hit in May. It was now “shorts time.”
Warning! If you’re over 30 and you’re doing “downward dog”, never, and I repeat, never look up at your thighs in that position. Your skin hangs down like a deflated balloon, exposing creases and wrinkles you had no idea were there. And then they all jiggle in a most shocking and unflattering way. This realization caused me to change the wardrobe in my exercise drawer. So now, when I go to Curves or do stretches even at home, I always wear black tights—the tighter the better.
Some aging you can make disappear from view.
Having this experience got me thinking: “What does my face look like when I’m looking down at someone?” you know, like CPR or something. I quickly got out a mirror, put it on the floor, got down on my knees and took a peek. Not a pretty sight. Horrifying might better describe it. Hmmm. Hopefully could I remember if I was ever in this situation to hold my head up and look straight ahead as much as possible? Just in case, perhaps I should always keep a paper bag handy.
Another event happened one day in my late forties. A spider vein showed up on my upper thigh. Again, “What the hell?”
Of course I was devastated. My great thighs, ruined for life.
The next dermatologist appointment I promptly asked what is it and what can I do about it? Well, a little vein breaks and it spreads out. If you press down on the area and move your thumb in the right direction, all the little weblets disappear—until you let up on the pressure and the blood comes roaring back in.
I thought about getting rid of it. I could spend a lot of money for a small surgery and be stuck at home, vein free. Or… I could wear shorts when hiking or canoeing. The sun could do its part to camouflage the disfigurement, and that fix would be free.
I chose the later.
“Bite Me” photograph by Sondra Diepen