I’ll be 40 years old in a month and I got my first birthday present: an age spot on my arm.
According to this guy, it will be hard to remove. Thankfully it isn’t large or pronounced, nor is it obvious. But I know it is there.
For the past eight birthdays, my body has given me a new “You Are Aging!” birthday present. One year, the skin next to my eyes wasn’t a smooth. Another year, my backside seemed to have dropped 2 inches (guess I was paying too much attention to my not-flat abs). Last year, the skin on my hands and arms was missing some elasticity.
I have a friend who spends an incredible amount of money on anti-aging programs. He has the money to do so – adult children, no spouse. He had a facelift (and can I tell you it turned out great! He looks like a regular person, just fewer wrinkles) and he gets hormone shots. I complained in front of him about aging and he said skin is the one area no one has been able to truly turn the tide on. Which is sad because it is the part every one sees. Who cares of my heart is the age of a 30 year old if my face looks 50.
My parents gave me the most important anti-aging tool: good genes. Both my father and mother look extremely young for their age – my dad still has all of his hair at 71 years. But it is what I have done with those genes that makes the difference. I have never been much of a sun worshiper since I burn and once I turned 30 I got very serious about my skin. But, again, the tide can’t be turned once it comes in. Lines don’t actually fade. Skin can’t get more taught once it loses its spring. Brown spots stay brown.
Can you tell this bothers me?
I could go into my psychology about beauty, my personal looks, my mother, etc. I don’t know that it would help though. I could blame it on “society” and the pressure to look young. I do, actually, look young…for 40. Isn’t that the game?
Here’s my real problem: I focus on what could have been but wasn’t. My lifestyle has changed but my mind-set hasn’t. I’ve been married for 8 years but I still want to be attractive – to men. I am no longer someone in any kind of spotlight but I continue to worry about being presentable. I don’t have to compete for anything using my looks, but I still want to be envied for them. If I give up these tendencies, though, will I let it all go to Hell and be just another mom in a pair of sweatpants at the park? Perish the thought!
I’ll never be one of those moms that looks amazing in a bikini – not my body type. But I’d like to be pretty for the rest of my life. I’d like to strive for turning heads when I walk into a room, like my mother does. You are welcome to judge me as shallow and self-focused. That won’t be anything new and is unlikely to change. What I would like to change is worrying about every new case of aging evidence without giving up completely. How have you dealt with growing older, or other transitions that are indisputable? Or how have you tried to fight it?
UPDATE: I’ve had lots of views (awesome!) but almost no comments. Really want to know how you are dealing with aging. Really!