What Does It Mean To Embrace Our Age?

What does it mean to embrace our age? In some ways, it’s a silly question. Our chronological age is not negotiable. Like our gender, race, and eye color, we have no control over what age we are. But unlike the cold hard fact of our age, we have a lot of control over:  1) how we think about it, and 2) how we look.

In Western society there’s a tendency to make older women invisible. There are no medals given to us for having reached a certain age. No pageants for Ms. Wisdom, Ms. Maturity, or Ms. Got-Her-Act-Together. If we study the advertisements, even products targeted for grown women are only actually shown on teens and 20-somethings.

“Don’t be afraid. Change is such a beautiful thing”, said the Butterfly.

― Sabrina Newby

That leaves us to think about how to age, gracefully or otherwise. What is our internal dialog about aging? And what’s this “embracing” all about? I think it starts with how we talk to ourselves about ourselves, without competition, without disparagement, and without bat-crazy delusions (I am forever young!). Below are some of the messages I try to send myself daily about the reality of being an older woman in a youth-obsessed world:

  • There are always trade-offs. The trade-off now is that of wisdom and acceptance for youth. Not really such a bad deal.
  • So long as I have people to love, work to do, books to read, and new ideas to think about, I will be full of passion. Passion makes me feel more youthful than any neck cream.
  • Lots of wonderful adventures still await, if I am willing. I don’t know for sure what is around the next corner, even though I have rounded many corners.
  • Live in the truth, not denial — but choose joy over despair.

“And the beauty of a woman, with passing years only grows.”

― Audrey Hepburn

As for the how-we-look part, there are interventions we can make to look healthier, without fixating on looking younger. Don’t smoke, don’t drink too much, don’t bake in the sun. Eat fresh foods, move around a lot, stretch, sleep enough. Get a stylish haircut, go easy on the makeup. And our fashion bloggers’ favorite: dress with pleasure! Get into that closet and put on something that makes you feel fantastic. Start a blog!

My close-up at age 65. Not dead yet.

Here are some beautiful over-50 women who are in the public eye. Yes, they certainly have the $$$$ to have procedures done, and they have professionals care for their hair and skin. But many of these women look like they’ve “embraced” their age. Love you, Judi Dench.

Do you have thoughts about how we embrace our age? Any over-50 role models that help you think about aging in a positive way?

Stay fabulous and safe, wash and wash and wash, xo

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patti

18 Comments

  1. You’re the real deal Patti! Turning 50 was traumatic for me and I welcomed 60. Now, I’m in the last year of my 60’s and often rely on affirmations spoken via the mirror. I am thankful I still like to get dressed up and only wear what I love.

    • Hi Neti and thanks for coming over. Always great to hear from you. I love the idea of mirror affirmations! Stay well, xx.

  2. Long time no see Patti. I’m delighted to hop across to see you today as you discuss age. I think I may end up being one of those old women who insist on telling everyone how old she is – I do it already, in fact! You are blessed with Peter Pan genes my dear friend as you look wrinkle free at 65! Joy and passion do indeed keep us young at heart and that’s all that matters.

    Take care
    Anna x

    • How great to see you Anna! And thank you for your kind words. Yes, let’s broadcast our ages and be impossibly proud, we have earned it. Stay well and fabulous, xx.

  3. A wonderful example is RBG! She always dressed beautifully and kept herself in excellent physical shape for all that she had been through medically. Of course, sharp as a tack!

  4. I like the list of reminders you included in this post. I feel like COVID has aged me about 10 years but I’m hoping that when I’m able to dress up again, and plan visits to see my friends I’m hoping I’ll feel more like “me”.

    • Hi Shelley! I feel you about the COVID-age acceleration. Let’s really celebrate when we start feeling like “ourselves” again. Stay safe, xx.

  5. One of my aging affirmations is to remind myself of the amazing experiences my body – at 57 – still allows me have, like my pre-pandemic Latin dancing and now pandemic-induced addiction to outdoor cycling. I do have to admit I enjoyed dressing for my own pleasure until the world got much smaller for public health reasons. Now I am more focused on the most comfortable cycling shorts for long rides – and a little relieved to just pop on a beautiful mask and wear my trifocals when running the occasional errand. When the world re-opens, I anticipate a heightened pleasure in dressing up again. I am not relishing having to buy all new make-up!

    • Hello Lynne and what a treat to see you! Your outdoor cycling sounds like a terrific way to work out pandemic angst. And to see the world, even if it’s a more compact one. And cheers for beautiful masks! Stay safe and fabulous, xx.

  6. Very positive and uplifting post, Patti! I love your outlook and, in all honesty, I can embrace my age some days better than others. I think all of the negativity in the world right now on top of Covid has really worked on my psychy but your post gives me something positive to dwell on. Thank you!

    • Good morning Debbie and thanks for coming by. It is a difficult time to stay positive! But I hope you are well and stay safe, xx.

  7. I think Hellen Mirren is a great example of embracing her age, she is downright delightful.

  8. Great selfie! You are real and I know you so I guess I relate more to you than any of the other photos. I dislike when brands target an older demographic, and state that in their marketing, and then use young models. That is BAD. Just sayin’. And many of the models look miserable. !! I like your list of reminders.

    • Thanks Mel! It is great to know someone and know that they’re real. : >
      Agree 1000% about the young models using anti-wrinkle creams. Hah – the wrinkle cream makers know we’re too savvy to believe in miracle cures. Stay safe and fab, xx.

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