Friday, February 18, 2011

Pearls of wisdom: aging ...

If you've been following this blog since I started writing it six months ago, then you may know that I am on sabbatical from my day job. It has been, and continues to be, a worthwhile journey of self-discovery.

Several friends and aquaintances have asked what I'm doing beyond blogging. Well, I am learning to accept where and who I am in this life.

The actress Doris Day is credited with saying, “The really frightening thing about middle age is the knowledge that you’ll grow out of it.”

I am now middle-aged, and I can tell you that pre-sabbatical, I was suffering from a case of 'future anxiety' -- looking down the road with trepidation rather than simply enjoying each day in the here and now. You can chalk it up to the media or our fascination with celebrity 'perfection,' but we women have issues with aging, particularly when it happens less gracefully than we had hoped. The years begin to chip away at our confidence just as they rob us of our collagen.

I told my best buddy that I feared becoming a 'handsome' woman, and that was the most frightening thing about aging. I told her, "I know that as I get older, I'll look more like Barbara Bush than Sophia Loren." To which, my brilliant buddy offered this stunning revelation:

"Then, buy yourself some pearls and accept who you are." We laughed so hard tears ran down our faces. This was one of those incredibly meaningful, life-changing moments.


Part of my acceptance is admitting that gravity has taken its toll (what once pointed forward, has become a downhill slope only a skier would love), a lifelong addiction to chocolate has transformed my body into a fruit shape silhouette (apple comes to mind), and a cute-as-a-button freckled face has deflated into spotted jowls and a neck reminiscent of an elderly lady's fallen stockings that have billowed down to a comfortable resting place. Oh, I am so there!

But, with those pearls, Barbara exudes self-confidence as much, if not more than those beauties who are enhanced by a skilled surgeon or Photoshop expert. I'm taking a lesson from this lovely lady and skipping the scalpel!

Bless his warm and wonderful heart (and a middle-aged man's diminished eyesight), my husband still sees me in a different light. Oh, how that man makes every day worthwhile! I'm learning to love me as much as he does.

So, now I'll put on those pearls and feel fearless!

You've gotta appreciate the lifelong friends that bring out the very best in us and have no hesitation in sharing Pearls of Wisdom! Thanks, Terri!

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