Aging gracefully

aging1One thing about the future is that it throws things at you that you would never even suspected. If you would have told teenage me that I would give up Dr Pepper, I would have called you a goddamn liar. If you would have told teenage me that I would have had weight loss surgery, need a breast reduction, be blogging about kid’s TV shows… no wait, I would have believed the kid’s TV shows thing.

Anyway, sufficed to say that teenage me had a very limited view of the world and what my future would be like. But as I’m leaving my 20s, I see things a lot differently. There are still things that I can’t see myself doing though, and one of those things is chasing youthfulness like a Kardashian in heels. Although I don’t know what the future will hold, I see this quest for youth as silly and distracting.

I was first aware of the fact that I was aging in a classroom when I was 15. A teacher told me that I had crow’s feet around my eyes when I smiled. When I was 20 a makeup consultant tried to get me to buy anti-aging cream as it’s apparently never too early to start an anti-aging regime. But the accusations of aging didn’t really bother me. I’m not a particularly vain person and I don’t hinge my happiness and well being onto my appearance.

I also don’t believe that women have an expiration date. I don’t believe that older women don’t have a place in society and should resign themselves to baking cookies and waiting for grandchildren at a certain age. As I said in one of my Random Thoughts blogs, hell if I know which one, youth is the opposite of experience. Experience is, in my opinion, even more important than youth.

Also, a lot of influential women in my life have been aging just fine without Botox or cosmetic procedures. My mom, for example, has never even dyed her hair, let alone done something like gone under the knife. While I believe that it’s fine to do whatever you feel comfortable with to your own body, I don’t think that trying to avoid aging, something that we will all do, is healthy or should be encouraged.

One thing because it takes up so much time. How much better could our time as women be spent other than chasing after a cultural idea of beauty that heavily relies on photo shopping? What amazing things could we do instead of worrying about our thighs or how our skin looks? There’s nothing wrong with taking pride in your appearance, but it seems like there are more products and methods of looking younger than there are hours in a woman’s lifetime.

No one should be raised to believe that their appearance is the beginning and end of who they are as a person or that women have an expiration date that they have to keep ahead of.  There are so many facets to a human being, why are we all obsessed with just one? As much as society wants to assure us that being attractive is all that you need to get by, a look at most celebrities will show that the’re not JUST attractive. They have talents such as acting or singing.

Even useless women like Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian are very strategic in their efforts to remain in the media spotlight. They don’t just do photoshoots. They put their names on products and leverage their popularity into reality shows and make sex tapes (which I’m sure is more complicated than it sounds). They aren’t just attractive.

When it comes to aging, I can’t see myself going to desperate lengths to hide my real age or try to convince frat boys that I’m their peer once I hit 40. When I actually do start aging, who knows what will happen? But with my current background in it, it doesn’t seem like growing older will be that traumatic for me.