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U3A Writing: Lift

The word “lift’’ prompts Jane Leitch to think of the word “face’’, and a series of thoughts involving plastic surgery follow on.

The Collins English dictionary gives twenty-seven definitions of ‘lift’. I chose to put the noun ‘face’ before it.

‘Do I need one?’ I asked the plastic surgeon while assisting with a mini face-lift.

A withering look over his mask accompanied his, ‘Darling, you needed one yesterday!’

That really left me muttering into my mask. It was a bit harsh after all, but was he ‘C’ for serious if all that was visible to him were my forehead and eyes? And, I might add, that was many years ago when I still felt reasonably young and comparatively wrinkle-free.

Cosmetic surgery is very interesting. Once the prerogative of the Hollywood brigade, it is now available to the women, and indeed men, in the street. Cost, of course, being a major consideration.

Many women choose to save on all sorts of luxuries; to have the little eye job done which really makes a great difference. That is, of course, provided they don’t have the corrugated upper lip, a result of too much smoking’ a lady once told me, looking straight at my perfect example. That requires regular ongoing doses of Botox at enormous pain and expense. Hence not even on my consideration list.

The problem with the actual face lift is it is ongoing. It is true that nothing lasts forever and all too soon the sagging starts again and another service is called for, and so it goes. Imagine the dread of having gone through all that, to find the wrinkles reappearing; better methinks to make friends with them, and look on them as positive acknowledgement of the length of time you have spent on planet earth.

Boobs play a great part in cosmetic surgery. How many of us are happy with what we have? They are invariably too big, too small, the wrong shape or hanging too low. Developing in the Twiggy era was agony. She made double AA’s the fashion, so being more than well endowed in that department, I suffered the slings and arrows of not being able to wear all the little skinny outfits that were then the rage.

I empathize with those whose reduction makes life a lot easier for them. And what about enhancement? Never needing the silicon route, it’s a little more difficult for me to understand their need. Is that not a typical reaction?

‘Lifts’ come in all guises. These days, when the childbearing years are over, and a hysterectomy is on the cards, it’s a great consolation that an abdominal lift is done at the same time; so a new flat-tummied model is produced. And indeed why not. Don’t they deserve it?

Having found letting the hair colour go to its natural root a most liberating experience, it was used at all times to one’s advantage – e.g. me saying, ‘little grey-haired lady needs help,’ worked such wonders for me on my brief trip to Sydney, resulting in gorgeous young pony-tailed youths coming to my rescue, that it made me realise that the time to reap had come.

When I look at my face first thing in the morning, I say ‘Hello Wrinkles,’ and thank God that I can still see, and doubly thank Him that, unlike the poor males in similar circumstances, I have a collection of bottles, jars, mascara and perfume, that can make me feel much better, wrinkles and all.


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