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Thursday, March 10, 2011

If I'm Lucky

I am pushing 40 with both hands.

40.

I remember when 40 was old.


I'm not dreading growing old(er) all that much. I honestly don't mind the numbers of years I am because I don't feel a day over 33.
I believe aging is both a state of mind and a physiological fact.

Sure it takes me longer to bounce back from the flu, lose the customary holiday five pounds I gain and hangovers feel like death, but I still
feel 33.

It's hard to believe that in just 15 short months, I'll be ringing in a brand new decade.

Some of my best friends are already there, the big 4-0 and they exude high energy, vitality and youthfulness. They look amazing and I hope to be just like that in June, 2012.

Too bad there are always the ugly voices. You know the ones.... the voices in our heads that tell us that everything of value is young and new and I'm simply not anymore.

The voices that both criticize and curse every new wrinkle, flaw, blemish and gray hair that sprouts up.

The voices that convince that jumping out of an airplane, getting a tattoo, taking up pilates, learning a foreign language and getting Botox will make us feel and look young again.

Some days my face feels so disorganized. Everything is shifting and it's almost as if it's been hanging in the closet for too long. I feel unattractive, haggard and tired. Perhaps it's just motherhood?
I don't feel that way on the inside, so it's hard to witness the changes occurring on the outside.

If I'm lucky, every once in a while the voices subside and I recall why I have crow's feet, furrows along my brow and lines around my mouth and I see the pure and simple beauty in them.

I'm proud of my lines and my age because I've earned them. I've laughed until I cried and cried until I laughed. I have lived, loved, lost, fell down, picked myself back up, traveled, read, seen, met, stuck my foot in my mouth, tasted, heard, touched, experienced, shared, learned and still want more!

I love each and every single line on my face because they make up my beautiful life. All 38 years of it, but only if I'm lucky.


This post is for The Red Dress Club's writing assignment, Red Writing Hood. This week's prompt was to write a short piece, either fiction or non-fiction, about something ugly - and find the beauty in it.

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25 Comments:

Blogger Lizz said...

Love this. (Geez, I'm saying that a lot tonight!)
I *am* 33 right now, and just wrote a post about aging and crow's feet the other day, so I know that feeling.
Excellent post.

March 10, 2011 at 10:22 PM  
Blogger gingerbreadmama said...

"some days my face feels so disorganized" - awesome description! Can i borrow it? I'll credit you of course - because I so resemble that remark!! Turning 40 wasn't easy for me but it also wasn't hard. I know that sounds silly but like you said, you make your peace with it because you know you have all the lines and whatnot because you've lived a beautiful life. You are fabulous now and will be at 40! I look forward to celebrating your 39th and 40th and many more birthdays with you! Oh and I highly recommend a big a*+ fan on the dance floor, it makes the celebration!! :)

March 10, 2011 at 10:45 PM  
Blogger Natalie said...

We have earned every line! And I don't mind 40 at all...I'll be 37 next week and I'm looking forward to 40 - it will mean that I'm finally "grown up" :)

March 10, 2011 at 10:55 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

I say "I've waited a long time to be this old" =)
I will be 39 this year, and I still love my birthday and still love every piece of wisdom I've earned in those years!

March 10, 2011 at 10:58 PM  
Anonymous Jessica said...

I still have several years before I am 40 but I do feel myself growing older with each year that passes. Right now I am struggling with the fact that I will be 30 next year. I really like how at the end you turn your attitude around and feel lucky for the lines on your face. You should be proud that you have lived your life and have some lines to show for it.

March 10, 2011 at 11:28 PM  
Blogger DaisyGal said...

I felt just like this before I turned 40..I am not sure what I expected to happen. But u write about it with the honesty it deserves..turning40 is a privledge..a hard earned award for making it through all the stuff. You r beautiful inside and out and 40 ain't gonna change that ;) great job!!!

March 11, 2011 at 3:34 AM  
Blogger Jessica said...

Beautiful just like you ;)

March 11, 2011 at 5:54 AM  
Anonymous Stacey said...

Aging is hard and beautiful at the same time! I love this post!

March 11, 2011 at 6:48 AM  
Anonymous Ilana @ mommyshorts said...

My favorite line is the one of about your face feeling like it has been hanging in the closet for too long. Oh god— do I understand that feeling!

March 11, 2011 at 6:52 AM  
Anonymous tracy said...

Love this. I have to say that I loved turning 40 - but 41..notsomuch. LOL

March 11, 2011 at 7:09 AM  
Blogger HonestConvoGal said...

I describe myself as on the 40 side of 30 ; ) We Southern women don't share our real age. Seriously, I loved this post. I see a lot of women using today's prompt to struggle with part's of themselves--lines or weight or whatever that they find ugly and seeing the beauty in it. I think that is WONDERFUL. And of course, I think you're just fabulous. (In case you head my way, I posted on my fiction blog today http://liarliarwordsonfire.blogspot.com) Don't feel obliged. It just tricks people that I have two blogs and no central home page.

March 11, 2011 at 12:02 PM  
Blogger Crystal said...

Oh this is excellent. I'm not at that point of loving my flaws...I still struggle with not being in my 20's. But I have a best friend in her 40's and she is so confident, so sure, so beautiful. I'm glad you wrote this. Thank you!!

March 11, 2011 at 12:48 PM  
OpenID transplantedx3 said...

I hit 40 a few weeks ago - and I agree - I don't feel like I'm that old - (well -there are days of course - when we ALL feel disorganized!) 15 months, though? lol - you haven't hit 39 yet and you're worried about 40! *giggle* - well done.

March 11, 2011 at 1:04 PM  
Blogger Mandyland said...

This was perfect! The line about hangovers...I used to go to work after a night of drinking. Now? I tried once and couldn't get out of bed the next day.

Brilliant post, lady!

March 11, 2011 at 2:08 PM  
Blogger angela said...

I like that you talk about not feeling 40, but what does 40 feel like? As I charge down the timeline of my life, I feel like our generation is changing the face of 30 and 40 and eventually 50 and 60. Maybe everyone feels like that?

March 11, 2011 at 3:58 PM  
Blogger Blue Moon Girl said...

Great way to do the prompt! Love this! I love the part about your face! Isn't that the truth?!?

March 11, 2011 at 4:44 PM  
Blogger Leah said...

It's weird that I don't think we've ever had the age conversation-how you felt about growing older. Turning 27 on Monday was slightly difficult for me. I'm no longer in my early to mid twenties! Haha! After reading your post, I look forward to earning the wrinkles, gray hair and all the other misc. flaws that make up growing older.

March 11, 2011 at 7:19 PM  
Blogger Liz said...

I'm a big believer that your wrinkles are a sign of a life well-lived and that age is just a state of mind. It's just a number, but it does NOT define you as a person.

March 12, 2011 at 6:29 AM  
Blogger Elaine A. said...

I still feel younger than I am all the time too. I'm always like "didn't I just graduate college and who do all these kids running around belong to?!?!" ;-P

I always think of my Grandma who was 95 when she died and she would talk about every wrinkle and line and how they were a symbol for something she went through in her life. This reminds me of her and is beautiful. Thank you.

March 12, 2011 at 1:34 PM  
Blogger Jenna said...

well done. and you know from reading mine that I identify.

also? I'm 38 too! :)

March 12, 2011 at 3:57 PM  
Blogger MrsJenB said...

I have never understood people who worry about getting older, honestly. Getting older is a good thing - it means you're still alive! And as you said, it's possible to be vital and energetic at any age. I've known some pretty elderly 30 year olds, and some 50 year olds who I'd swear were 35 or younger. Either way, I'm sure you'll be as beautiful at 40 and beyond as you are now.

March 12, 2011 at 4:20 PM  
Blogger Renee said...

I love the aging, although the aches could stay away.
40 was an epiphany for me. 50, was awesome. I love the things my face says in it's lines and crinkles.
I'll be 55 this year. Going on 18.

March 12, 2011 at 4:22 PM  
Blogger Cheryl said...

I love the line about your face being disorganized. I discovered loose skin under my chin. And pictures taken of me show all the wrinkles around my eyes and I'm getting them on my upper lip, the kind that lipstick bleeds into and I always thought were caused by smoking. Which I don't.

Sigh.

My insides definitely don't match up with my outsides.

March 12, 2011 at 8:59 PM  
Blogger Sherri said...

I love this! You will rock 40, you will....and 50 and beyond. It's all in how you feel, and I don't feel a day over 28 on the inside. I feel sorry for some of the young gals I see who just don't look comfortable in their own skin. What's life if you can't enjoy it?!

I love this!

March 13, 2011 at 8:51 PM  
Anonymous MamaRobinJ said...

I love the "disorganized" line too.

I'm a little farther from 40, but not much. I'm feeling the physical stuff lately - greys popping up, harder to lose weight, face feeling a little less young. It's recently started to make me feel old, which is disconcerting because I always looked forward to 40 as the time I will feel closer yet to my most confident self - other issues notwithstanding ;)

So yeah, I feel ya.

March 13, 2011 at 9:05 PM  

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