Article by Juliet Young
I’m feeling more than just shirty. I’m feeling decidedly irritated and maybe even a little cheesed off, as one online dictionary offered me as a quaint definition of this very old, very British adjective.
Shirts. My shirts. Hubby’s, which I very kindly iron every day, because I’m so damned nice and too damned rushed to do more than one at a time, don’t really bother me. They’re big, they’re cotton, they’re his.
My shirts are another matter. Should I in fact actually be calling them blouses? Some of them do have cute little flowers, paisley pattern swirls, or small white polka dots printed upon them. On the polka-dotted one there are even a couple of stray yellow dots, which could be used as a ‘find the odd one out’ game if ever I get bored at work.
But, in fact, the big problem is that I won’t be wearing it, or any of them, to work or anywhere else in the next few weeks.
I can’t get my arms into the sleeves
How come? I can no longer get my arms into the stupid sleeves.
I knew I had put on weight during my three week food-fest holiday in the south west of France in August. On the scales there were three extra kilos shouting their hellos when we returned to our own bathroom which sports a rarely-used set of scales.
There was one new kilo for each week of the holiday. But it was no wonder, really. I was eating things like black pudding and olive-oiled mash! Every evening was apéritif evening. Every walk into the centre of town was accompanied by a friendly ice-cream cone. We tried a different restaurant almost every night and they don’t scrimp on the portions down there. And we didn’t scrimp on the expense either. Starters, mains, desserts every time, with fabulous bottles of red wine consumed alongside them.
How could I ever have come back without those three kilos, when you consider the rate at which we devoured those pesky extra calories? I suppose I could have run a marathon every day if I had wanted to keep them at bay. But if you know me even a little bit, you surely realise that this will never, ever happen.
So the three kilos were there but I just didn’t know where. My nasty, naughty stretchy jeans didn’t breathe a word. They let them in and were quite happy to pretend nothing new was going on down there. My super baggy summer t-shirts also stayed mum. Where are the little buggers, I wondered. Never mind. I can imagine they’re not there at all.
It was only last week when autumn arrived and the chill crept into the air that I discovered where they were hiding. I had decided to wear one of my faithful favourite shirts/blouses to work. Drat and double drat. What’s happened to this one? And maybe this one was tumble dried by mistake? Oh no, this one is too tight too!
An extra kilo on each arm
It all became clear very quickly. I have at least one extra kilo on each arm. The last one is definitely around my tummy. I’m looking at it now as I sit here, writing.
So what shall I do? My younger daughter has advised ‘push-offs’ against a wall. They are pretty much the equivalent of a push-up, but standing. I’m going to try.
My elder daughter advocates tins of tomatoes. Not eating them, but holding onto them as I raise my arms and keep them at shoulder height for far too long.
My husband says to just wear jumpers and not worry about the flabby arm syndrome, I’m beautiful just as I am. That’s why I iron his shirts. He says all the right things.
But I have the solution. A temporary one, I swear. I’ll just buy a few new shirts, one size up and no one will be any the wiser.
Comfort and retail therapy in one easy package. What more could a body ask for?
For more insights into what makes me feel young and happy take a look at my blog below and feel free to follow me.
Juliet Young is the author of the blog – omgimfifty which she decided to create on turning fifty last year. She describes it as a self-indulgent observation of moments which make her laugh or moments which make her cry at this new stage of life.
Originally from Glasgow, Scotland she now lives in France with her husband and two daughters. She works in an English language school when she is not writing. Her next plan is to start working on a full-length comical book about being married.