Aging Out Loud
I look at other blogs on aging and read the comments made by women to gage how they are feeling about growing older. I like the blog Growing Bolder. A quote by singer Melissa Ethridge caught my eye: “I would not trade in my 50’s for any other time I’ve lived. If you’re facing 50, don’t be afraid. It gets so much better and you get so much more stronger.”
The remarks that followed were varied…here are some samples:
“Loved turning 30, 40 but turning 50 has me on edge.”
“Best age so far.”
“Oh lordy, I’m pushing 60. I’m scared, real scared.”
“Not enjoying mine at all.”
I’m curious to know what others think about their age. Yes, it’s scary because we are getting closer to death, but a lot of our negative feelings may be coming from what society says and feels about aging. And the point is not to be silent on the issue. The real power comes from women sharing our challenges, fears, joys and dread. This is the time to speak up because we have more wisdom to spread. We have made mistakes and grown, learned what’s important and what’s not, retired our need to get everyone’s approval and our constant need to feel “important.”
Come on baby boomers we haven’t gone through all this only to become invisible. If a woman is alone watching yet another wrinkle cream commercial she will inevitably feel bad about her skin, looks and maybe even grow depressed. She might turn to Botox, fillers, surgery spending hundreds and thousands of dollars to keep up a youthful appearance. I’m not saying that is wrong or bad; it just sends a message to the younger generation that looking your age is not acceptable.
I admit I was one of those who feared 40 and was terrified at 50. I noticed that many women didn’t want to talk about the aging process — one of the reasons why I started this blog. But we don’t have to be rock stars, actors or models to make a statement about age. We can talk to one another in neighborhoods, communities and blogs that challenge the status quo.
I’m ok with aging. I don’t love the creaks my body makes when I try to get out of a chair, but otherwise I like who I am. But it’s a day to day process!
I can sum up how I feel about getting older in one word: Damn Lucky!! Ok that’s 2 but I felt the need for an adjective considering all of the hideous illnesses and happenstance that could easily have denied me the opportunity to grow older.
Perhaps another word would be “grateful”. I never saw the appeal of dying young so if I had the choice I would place my order for a long illness-free life. And if that comes with a side of wrinkles than I’ll take that too!
I’m 54. Wife, mother, grandmother, sister, cousin and auntie. There’s no choice but to accept and celebrate every advancing year; just getting older. Listen, there are times I’ll look in the mirror and wonder who that old woman is. Yet, I’ve known several friends who tragically died young. So I celebrate the years that got to me where I am right now.Ya know, the worst part of aging is the number attached. I feel the same as if I were in my 30’s, and if there were no mirrors, magazines or stigma, I’d live in a blissful state. Yet, sadly I’ve felt almost invisible by society at times. It’s their loss after all. I’ll continue to have my highlights, eyelash extensions (guilty indulgence) and leather jackets. Lol, I’m the same young woman that’s going to dance, regardless of the candles on the cake. Plastic surgery? No. Facials, okay. I do it for myself. Because I’ve earned it, not because society is too youth obsessed to appreciate the beautiful diversity of women in all facets of life. Now, more than ever women need to pull together and show their force. Whether that be at the voting booth or supporting women’s rights, business owners and companies that celebrate equal pay.
Thanks for the thoughtful comment on my blog. I’m so glad that you took the time to share your thoughts about what it’s like to be 54. I can really relate to the forgetting how old you are until you look in the mirror. Our true essence never goes away though sadly society indirectly tells more mature women that they really are not that useful any longer. That’s why it’s up to us to change the message, create a new paradigm.
I’m curious if you are a subscriber or how you heard about my blog. I would love to continue having these conversations with you and would appreciate it if you could spread the word and let me know if you have any ideas for upcoming blog posts.
Hi there, I’m curious how you heard about my blog. Are you a subscriber? I love your comment…it really is a day to day process!