“Wow! You’ve aged well!” – Old acquaintance
“I’d say you’re 90% gray.” – Hairdresser
“Your laugh lines show your good humor.”- Sister
“You’ve got a rockin’ body for your age.” – Coworker
“Go on, get a face lift. You’ll feel so much better.” – One of my face–lifted friends
“No, don’t get a facelift. You make us look good.”- Another of my face-lifted friends(?)
“Those age spots will continue to appear as the years go on.” – Dermatologist
It’s no wonder that middle age and beyond is a stressful time for most women! As a motivational speaker on healthy lifestyle I’ve walked my talk for 30 years and am in good physical condition and vibrant health for 57. And yet just this morning I noticed a new age spot on my left hand and flipped out! "NOT ON MY HAND! I CAN’T HIDE IT IF IT’S ON MY HAND!"
Now, for the most part, I am pretty accepting of the natural aging process and honor my body for all the years of work, play and abuse it has gone through. But this blatant sign of old skin knocked me off my Zen rocker. There it shone, right next to a tiny scar I got from a broken bathroom stall latch when I was partying back in my 20’s.
That’s when the idea hit me.
Instead of lamenting the battle scars of yesterday that are showing up today, why not bequeath them with a fond memory instead? Yes! My new “liver spot” must have come from that weekend sailing off the coast of Maine back in 1975! That was such a fantastic time! I smile broadly remembering the beautiful weather, the wonderful people, the thrill of heeling when we caught the wind just right. Not that I now love my new spot but I do love the memory that it evokes. Hmm, lets see if this will change my attitude about my stiff right knee… I’m sure I got it from the many spills I took on the ski slopes during high school. But boy, skiing was THE MOST fun I had every winter and I’m glad I pushed my limits. It was exhilarating! I wouldn't want to trade those fun times for a non-stiff knee now. (I only feel it during yoga's Child's Pose anyway) Hey! It worked!
So instead of the killer negative attitudes we can have as we watch our bodies do their aging thing, let’s instead see our wrinkles, greying hair and leopard's spots as a historical road map of our life. Let's, instead, look back fondly on the people, places and events that we’ve experienced that have made a mark on our lives. Let's honor our bodies for being the physical vehicle that it is and continues to be on our unfolding journey of life.
Now where’s that concealer?