After a long, luxurious soak in the bath, Lisa heaved herself up to standing position and gasped. Her lecherous landlord had snuck in and replaced the strip light tube on the bathroom ceiling while she had been at work. Standing there, butt-naked and dripping soapy bathwater her reflection in the mirror was unforgiving under the new tube’s glare.
She was appalled. The last time she’d taken a close look at herself naked, everything was where it should have been. Why hadn’t she been paying closer attention? Her body had gone from pert to prolapsed in the blink of an eye.
Cupping her hands beneath her breasts, she pushed them up, then let them go. Gravity deemed the only way for them to flop was south. She remembered being inspired by those liberated ladies of the Swinging Sixties who, allegedly, threw all caution to the wind and made a bonfire of their bras. Letting those perky little darlings live free two decades ago seemed like a good idea at the time – but that invigorating liberation was having a knock-on effect now.
‘Before you know it, you’ll be the size of a house.’ Her mother’s words had come back to haunt her.
She’d started having nightmares about turning sixty, not forty, waking up in a cold sweat and screaming, ‘there’s been some mistake. My Mother’s only fifty-nine.’ She didn’t identify with being forty. She didn’t want to be forty. She didn’t feel forty, but having just looked at her reflected image, there was no getting away from it, every portly inch of her was looking forty.
She wrapped a towel around herself in disgust. It struggled to cover everything up, so she made a mental note to buy a couple of bath sheets as opposed to bath towels. Putting on a dressing gown, she tied the belt around the potato sack that used to be her waist and stomped off to the bedroom, collapsing onto the bed. She needed to address this unsatisfactory situation because it was not going to go away on its own.