I refuse to ‘anti-age’. In fact, I think I refuse to ‘anti’ almost everything. But where my appearance is concerned, I am proud and happy with who and what I am. I have spent 51 years on planet earth and have survived a devastating illness. I have done everything within my power and means to take care of my body, including my skin and hair and nails and everything else society associates with beauty and femininity. But because it’s healthy for me and I enjoy doing it. I don’t smoke. I don’t drink to excess. I don’t eat too much fat or salt or meat. I exercise daily, and see my medical care providers and get preventative tests routinely and enjoy indulging in fresh, organic fruits and foods. I take my vitamins and get enough sleep. I love coffee and red wine and the company of my pets and my husband and family. Why would I want to reverse that? I have a few wrinkles and even a few gray hairs but I think I look great. I don’t mean that in an arrogant way. I’ve never been one to stop traffic. Like everyone else, I’ve had to make peace with more than a few things I don’t like about my physical appearance. But I know the blessings I have in my softly textured, natural curly hair and my extremely smooth skin, and in my slim frame. Of course, those are all genetic but I do my best to take care of and maintain them because it makes me feel good to love my body. I won’t be pegged or pigeon-holed into any box because of my age. I won’t be made to feel less desirable or less feminine or less anything because of my age. In fact, I feel all those things much more positively because of the knowledge I have gained in living all these years. Yes, I am middle-aged and yes, middle-age is beautiful. Perhaps more so than youth because we have wisdom and experience that brings true happiness and fulfillment. My happiness isn’t brushed or patted on, it is etched on. Permanently.
I don’t want to ‘anti-age’. Why on earth would anyone? I’m not looking for the wrinkle cream advertised by a 22-year-old celebrity to give me a new lease on life. I don’t want a new lease on life. I want the life I’ve worked hard to build for myself. I don’t want a foundation to hide my perceived flaws, I want a foundation to cover up the spots that come from sun exposure and to blur the occasional blemish that even post-college aged gals and guys sometimes get. I certainly don’t want an ‘anti-aging’ lipstick when these lips have kissed more times than her younger counterparts and all they long for is a little moisture and to add a bit of brightness to her smile.
And darn it, now that I am the age I am, I have the money to spend on products to help me take care of myself, and to help me look the way I want to look, for me. Why is anyone trying to tell me I need a bottle or jar of something to look like a school girl again? I looked like a college girl when I was in college and it was my turn. Great. Fine. Dandy. Now I’m a near-retired girl who is embarking on new adventures, some of which are taking me around the world, and I want to look like one. I don’t even want a mascara that promises to make me look like a Real Housewife of Any County. She of all people is probably less likely than any of us to be what she makes herself out to be. I just want a mascara that makes my less than full lashes a little more visible on this pair of eyes that has seen some truly amazing things in this life, both good and bad. And I can afford the $22 per tube price tag whereas the girls the media wants me to be are likely eating Raman Noodles for dinner. They can barely afford dime store mascara let alone high end.
You see, there are benefits to aging and I much prefer this process over ‘anti-aging’. Anti-aging means going back to the day when I barely made the rent and drove a used car. Anti-aging means figuring out how my husband and I could afford an anniversary dinner out and a three-week stint in Europe seemed an impossible dream. Anti-aging means not being able to afford all those luxurious, feminine treats like eye gel masks and designer perfume and my own horse. ‘Anti-aging’ is not a good thing and we need to stop letting the world of advertising make it out as such. Aging is beautiful and if you are lucky enough to keep doing it, you are lucky enough.
As always, live beautifully!
**Images courtesy freeimages.com