It’s official. I’m an old lady.
The reality snuck up on me within the past few years, but hit home recently when I noticed “old lady” traits/habits impossible to ignore and deny.
For instance, I now cut my hamburger in half and eat one part for lunch and save the other for dinner. Gone are the days when I wolfed down a whole Whataburger or Burger King Whopper in one meal.
Goodness gracious! Ah, that‘s another trait. For some unknown reason, I keep saying this phrase.
It is in the old lady’s handbook, along with “Isn’t that sweet,” usually said when a grandchild does something cute, and “Do you have Sanka?”
Heed these warning signs folks, because there are more.
Mowing the lawn is now a two-day ordeal, and I doubt I’m alone.
Day one is for cutting the small front yard and about a third of the larger backyard or Central Park, Jr.
The task is accomplished by wearing a variety of braces on my knees, ankles and back. Thankfully, I use my smaller, lighter electrical mower, which is easy to guide with one arm; whichever one is less achy.
Afterward, I retire for an afternoon nap, a standard for an old lady.
Happy hour means something completely different to an old lady than a younger one. It consists of downing a shot of Geritol followed by drinking a glass of Gatorade — sipped through a straw.
I didn’t make the rules, but I must obey them. As is taking my own seat cushion to the movie theater and wearing my driving glasses to watch it.
When it comes to watching television, well there is no substitute for quality programs like 40-year-old reruns of “MASH” and “The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson.”
It’s a hoot to watch stars long dead that still make me laugh until I fall asleep at about 11 p.m.
Furthermore, I’ve developed a sudden urge to hug everyone, from the cashier at a hardware store to the Salvation Army bell ringer. Actually, I gave her one of the reduced-price apple turnovers I bought.
Ah, another undeniable signal of old lady status — giving people food even when they don’t ask for it.
Somehow, I graduated from middle age to an old lady right in front of my eyes.
Sure, I saw it coming, even without my glasses, but I thought age would wait a while longer to catch up to me.
So, I’ve resigned to finally accepting the quote by one of the greatest old ladies ever, Bette Davis, who said, “Old age ain’t for sissies.”
Val Valdez is a Herald correspondent.