“I want to grow old with you.”
A romantic line whose meaning gets lost in the translation.
I thought “growing old with you” meant “growing fat with you.”
Not that my husband and I don’t try to stay fit. We walk, hike, and bike. On a class reunion scale of one to 10, Hubby and I generally score between six and seven. Good, but not obnoxious like those aliens who’ve maintained their graduation weight. No one over 50 should be without love handles. A small potbelly witnesses to the good life.
Unfortunately, Hubby and I took the good life to an extreme last winter. Love handles had turned to love tires, inflation dangerously close to maximum.
Hubby bought new scales.
I wanted to yell at him. But I couldn’t breathe; my jeans were too tight.
Torture enough, right?
Having recently retired, Hubby fulfilled a lifelong dream: exercise.
He put his money where his muscles were, hiring a 21-year-old personal trainer. A guy who doesn’t remember when bacon was considered healthy.
Surely, my crazed spouse would recover from this madness. Instead, sporting new exercise attire, Hubby went to the gym.
He returned looking like he’d kept an appointment with the devil, gray-faced and covered with sweat. He’d hauled 30-pound medicine balls and heaved weights. Did “planks” and sit-ups.
“That trainer should pay you,” I said.
I’d wanted to grow old with him. Now, I almost changed my mind.
Talking hurt him too much, but from his expression, the feeling was mutual.
Still, he refused to abandon his nightmare, er, dream. “I want to set up our camper without an Ibuprofen fix. Chop wood. Backpack in bear country.”
His potbelly shrank. His waistline tire deflated.
Meanwhile, mine threatened to explode. Would my Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup habit hasten my demise? So he could grow old with an equally svelte blonde who could lift campers with him and backpack with bears?
Sad, but determined, I buried my Reese’s Cups deep in the freezer under ancient containers of grated zucchini.
At least, the trainer on my senior exercise video looks 35, not 21. He’s okay, though entirely too cheerful. If I’ve had it with Chirpy’s smiley face, I make him disappear. Click. Poof.
That’s the personal trainer you want. Not one who, during the COVID-19 shutdown, emailed even scarier workouts Hubby could do at home.
I made peace with the exercise bike by reading. During microwave numbers countdown, I stretch, hoping someday to recover a waistline.
My tire has deflated somewhat. My potbelly has diminished.
Hubby and I aren’t growing fat together.
Though some sweet day, the Reese’s Cups I dig out may change that. …
Your Extraordinary Ordinary: How do you translate “growing old together”?