Every year that goes by and I notice the changes in my physical appearance I have to continue to ask, "Will I be able to grow old gracefully? Will I be able to handle looking slightly haggy as the years progress, not care, and embrace where I am and how far I have come?
Will I be able to stay in a place of gratitude for being fortunate enough to merit old age in the first place?
When it comes to women getting old and the topic of growing old gracefully, there is no answer that will please everyone.
If a woman dabbles in or embraces any type of plastic surgery as she fights the inevitable, many complain and say, "Why can't she grow old gracefully? She is so fake."
Then if a woman does decide to go "all natural" and not indulge in any type of maintenance along the way, many say, "Wow, she is really looking tired, haggard, and old lately. Why doesn't she do something about that?"
You cannot win in this aging gracefully game. That was apparent to me when I took a close up of my lips and the fine lines my failing eyesight conveniently missed this past year were quite obvious to see. The camera lens had no problem picking those furrows right up.
And my pores, who knew they were so visible? It has been two decades since I was obsessing in front of my magnified and well lit makeup mirror. I am actually glad I missed all this graceful aging right before my very eyes.
When I studied my lip pic, I thought, ewwww, fine lines and the pores look big. Then again, that is reality… will I be able to continue this blog? The gravity is pulling hard on all parts of me and every year that passes it gets even stronger.
I told my husband a few months ago, "I don't want to grow old in the public eye. I need to pull out now, while I still look half decent." I remembered Doris Day did that and she forever remained a perfect, young, spunky, wrinkle free, soft as cotton, soft focus lense blonde in my mind.
Then I read a post about Madge. The blogger was recalling all of her accomplishments and why she admired her.
The blogger praised Madonna for several paragraphs. Then she started to rip into her for not being able to age so gracefully.
The blogger wanted Madonna to show women that getting wrinkles was okay, just like it was okay to not have to fix that gap between her two front teeth.
I don't believe this is so easy to do though. Can we really expect any woman who has spent a large portion of her life involved in beauty and fashion just let it all go and still be confident during the ravages of aging?
When the whole world is looking at you every second of the day and scrutinizing your style, new wrinkles, dark circles, cellulite, veiny hands, stringy hair or whatever all women eventually encounter at one point in their life, it is not so easy to just go with it and not fight some of it along the way.
The bottom line is, it is hard to grow old gracefully and I bet it is very difficult for a woman like Madonna.
Yes, it is a sick kind of vanity but the truth is, it is challenging for a woman who was pretty her whole life to grow old and just say, "Cool, bags and crow's feet are so pretty on me now. I really love those vertical lip lines too, it makes me want to go out and show the world my wisdom."
Actually, that is what I am telling myself as I try and age gracefully. I am fortunate to have my father's Italian skin, and my obsessive need to eat healthy also helped me manage to escape some crow's feet.
But those days are long gone. What was just a "few feet" two years ago has now grown into an entire flock of crows.
If I smile, the flock takes off!
So now you know the truth. I am a typical, 49 year old aging woman who knows her looks are slipping away quickly and realizes that more crepe-like skin around the eyes is inevitable. The sink and hang syndrome is in full force and although I keep fighting it, the battle continues.
What is sink and hang syndrome you may ask?
Put a mirror flat on the table. Lean over and face down. Look at that. See it? That is sink and hang. The skin on your face is loose (hang) and the areas that used to be plumper begin to deflate (sink).
The two choices are clear for the aging women when it comes to S&H. Deal with sink and hang and those that complain of the sink and hang look. Just ignore them when they say you looked tired and worn out. Don't pay attention to comments like, "I remember when she used to really be a stunner back in the day!"
Or two, plump up the sink, cut up the hang, and deal with the complainers who say you can't grow old gracefully. Enjoy looking like a tight faced, plumped up, shiny, age fighting lady and be proud! Ignore the haters and those that are jealous of your obvious maintenance package.
Only time will tell what happens to me when it comes to deciding that I need to cut that hang, fill up that sink or leave it empty. I have fought the battle some in the past, but now it appears I need to fully engage in the war.
Today, however, I am cool with the gentle 49 year old sink and hang, and I am working it into my style. How about you?