This year, I have noticed that middleagedad and I have increasingly been doing something that can only be described as a Middle Age Sigh. An exasperated expulsion of stress/frustration/disbelief/annoyance that is often -but not always- related to teenagesons’ activities.
The sigh comes from deep within, a sort of well-what-do-you-expect feeling where age and experience combine to produce a physical manifestation of middleagegrumpiness. It’s the sort of sigh you could imagine Charlie Brown doing after Lucy had given him a good kicking. Middleagedad seems to sigh a lot more than he used to, often when confronted with yet another IT issue he thought he’s sorted. Computers, electrical equipment and piles of dumped shoes/sports kits/coats start him off. I find myself sighing when I can’t find kitchen equipment because it hasn’t been put away in its CORRECT PLACE or someone has put an empty jar of Marmite/jam/mayonnaise back in the fridge or my earphones have been nicked again.
We both sigh when confronted with long, slow moving queues, when asked if we have a Nectar/Boots/Tesco card EVERY TIME we go to the till (stop this, please, if we have one we will hand it over) and when we discover the car parking space we have just found is ‘pay by phone’ (could this be more complicated?).
The sigh shouldn’t be confused with out-right crossness, which involves shouting and stomping and banging of doors. No, the sigh is more a mid way house between mild annoyance and real fury. it’s more of an acceptance that this is the way it is in a world that can’t keep up with how we want it to be and STAY. We love iTunes and our iPhones, for example, but find ourselves doing The Sigh when having upgraded to yet another new version (is it us or do they come out every week now?) we lose all our contacts/lists/other stuff due to an overlooked glitch.
Although it makes us feel a tiny bit better (it is actually good for you) the Middle Age Sigh is definitely ageing. It marks us out as miserable and disappointed with the modern world and there’s nothing more ageing than constant grumpiness. So we’re trying VERY HARD to give up the Middle Age Sigh as part of our New Year’s Resolutions, I reckon we’ll make it to January 2nd if we’re lucky…#sighs.