By: Suzanne Reisler Litwin
When I was in New York City a few months ago, my Mother asked me to do her a favor. She asked me to go to Macy’s and purchase 6 of her favorite knickers (underwear). She gave me the brand name, style number and size. Anything my Mother asks of me, I do.
So, I went to the store and gave the sales clerk the brand name, style number and size of the item she wanted. The sales clerk quickly told me that the company had stopped making that specific style. She then used the VERY BAD word. She said that the style was “DISCONTINUED”.
Now I had a problem. I didn’t want to disappoint my Mother. I asked the sales clerk if there was a replacement style or others which were similar that my Mother could try. She gave me 6 different styles to try. It was better than nothing and now we had some hope in finding something to replace her favorite knickers.
“They are what? Discontinued? Seriously? Now, what am I supposed to do? It’s seems the longer you live, the more EVERYTHING BECOMES DISCONTINUED! Some of my friends are discontinued! Some of my favorite foods are discontinued. My favorite clothing is discontinued. It seems that they are sending me a message. Am I supposed to be discontinued, too?”
As I expected, I had to settle my Mother down on this issue. I said to her “Go easy there little Doggie! It’s just underwear. Also, there are 6 different ones to try.” She wasn’t interested in “trying” anything. She just wants what she likes and nothing new. She has simple needs and nothing fancy either. But, what choice did she have? She had to move forward of the discontentment from the discontinued.
I suppose when you get to a certain age in life, some of the things that you have lived with and loved, eventually become discontinued. Unfortunately, people are part of this process too.
I have a “perineal personality”. This is a term I have made up about myself. Basically, I like to do the same things yearly. I set up a “LOVE gift exchange table” in my kitchen on Valentine’s Day. I plant my flowers and vegetable garden in the spring. I decorate my house for Halloween. I carve a pumpkin and give out yummy treats. In November, I put my garden to bed for the winter. Then I ski as much as I can all winter, right into April. I have done these things for years. I won’t stop. I don’t think I can stop. My personality forces me to be this way.
There was something else I used to do yearly. In September of each year, I would go apple picking. I would go with my family when I was a child. Then, I would go with my friends. Then I took my own children. As they got older, they showed less interest in going as a family. They wanted to go with their own friends or not at all. I went back to going with my friends.
Now, I don’t have any friends who want to do this at all. So, I go with my Mother to the apple orchard farm. She’s not interested in physically picking apples any more. She much prefers visiting the farm to smell the orchard, and buy a pie and muffins. It is more of an outing than an activity.
My yearly apple picking activity has been temporarily discontinued. I’m ok with it. I suppose I just need to wait to be a Grandmother and then I will take my grandkids with me.
There are some people who love to try and buy new things. There are some people who only like the comforts of their old things. I am a bit of both. I love some new things, but I also hang on to many old things. I am comforted by my old things. Most of my running clothing is quite old. The pieces which are closest to my body are the oldest as I love the comfort they provide. I know exactly how to layer them or not. I know how the clothing functions on me. I don’t need to “TRY IT OUT”. I just know how it works for me.
I have a friend who is always trying to turn me on to new things. “Sue, you should try this and that. It’s the best. Trust me!” I usually try one out of 10 things she suggests. Why not more? I guess it’s because I don’t like trying new things that often. Perhaps this is me, a pure Capricorn personality which makes me…a stubborn goat!
I guess in life, everything will eventually become discontinued at some point. The best advice is to let go of the discontentment, as soon as possible, because the perineal of life is the inevitable.
Btw: My Mother found a good fitting knicker from the 6 I got her. We can all rest easy now!
Suzanne Reisler Litwin is an instructor at Concordia University in The Centre for Continuing Education. Suzanne is a freelance contributor to The Suburban newspaper. She is the author of the children’s book, The Black Velvet Jacket. She lives in Montreal, Canada with her 3 children, Allyn, Taylor, and Duke and her husband Laurie. Suzanne contributes regularly to West Island Blog under her column Keeping it Real. Please visit her website www.suzannereislerlitwin.com to read more of her published articles, books, and poetry.