Aging Gratefully

Three years ago I noticed my first wrinkle. It’s the one that starts in between your brows as the number 1 and ends up the number 11 soon thereafter.

I guess have too many “WTF” moments and crinkle my brows too much.

Lately I have been noticing that I scar much more easily. A mosquito bite that I itch too much will leave a red welt for months. A pimple can not be touched, otherwise I forever have a reminder of its existence.

I have never been a natural beauty. I look quite like Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) when I wake up in the mornings. I call it the “Fair Ginger Curse” of having white eyelashes and eyebrows. The kicker is I have five sisters who would all be able to wake up in the morning and feel confident in leaving their house without makeup if necessary. Two of these sisters are redheads who managed to inherit the dark lashes and brows. What the hell?

I am pretty sure I have always put makeup on if I need to see the light of day. Going to the mailbox? – At least concealer and mascara. Walking the dog? Better draw on those eyebrows too.

Growing up I had so many friends who were able to just wing it and be natural with confidence. I envied them so much. I knew by age 12 how to do a full face of makeup. I thank my five sisters for teaching me their ways.

Unfortunately, in my desire to look good all the time and at least be able to “compete” with the looks of the other girls my age, I lost my confidence in being in my natural state. I would run into my bedroom if someone stopped by our house so I could dab a little foundation on and give those white eyelashes a little colour. On weekends camping or staying overnight with my friends, I made sure I woke up early enough so I could refresh my face.

When someone would tell me that I was pretty or other appearance related compliments, I would secretly laugh on the inside. Did they realize what I had to go through to even look remotely average?

Even to this day, if I want to look as made up as some people manage, it is a friggin’ process:

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Ron Weasleyish…………………..Something Scary……………….How people think I look.

It is a blurry picture, but you get the idea. Do you really think I was going to give you a full resolution pic? Honestly, my camera was smashed when I took it. Instafilter.

This is why I am jealous when people I know can bare it all and be confident. Imagine the time and money I have spent just trying to keep up appearances.

After all of this time – 20 years of painting my face – I had resigned myself to this just being part of my routine. I am not sure who benefits the most from this? The people who have to look at my face? Or me?

As I age, some tricks are just not working like they used to. My foundation and concealer finds its way into my new wrinkles and cracks. My eyes have slowly become more hooded, so I need to change the way I put on eyeshadow. My lips are thinner and less plump. My skin is dry… no wait… it is oily…no wait…dry again.

Slowly I am giving less and less fucks about taking the time to make myself pretty enough to please other people. The more work it becomes, the more I realize how it is not worth it.

The same goes for my body.

I am a littler rounder in the middle. The result of carrying two babies and quite possibility the result of frequent all-you-can-eat pasta nights.

My arms and legs are jiggly – also the result from those pasta-laden nights – but those arms carry a 30-lb toddler several times per day, act as a pillow on nights when the bed is a little cramped and I can punch really hard. I won’t even tell you how much these legs can press, because you would be jealous.

I am not going to look they way each person wants me to look.

It has only been in the recent few years that I have realized that is OK.

When we get older, I think it finally settles in that looking a certain way is a lot less important than the way we act. It is by far less important than the way we treat other people and it is not something we should give so much validity.

The way I look does not make me a better person.

I am a better person because I am true to my self. I am honest. I try to be good – but hey, I am a little bad sometimes. I like it when people are happy, but I think happiness comes from a place far away from our appearances.

I will probably continue to wear my makeup, but maybe give it less hold on my self-confidence. I can also guarantee I will still be working on my fitness goals with my jiggly bits and all, because fitness isn’t a size, it is how I feel. Oh, and I will probably find surprises as the days and years go on – you know, like that I am finding I am getting shorter or something – but what I will try to remember is that it isn’t necessarily how gracefully I can age, it is how gratefully I can embrace it.

 

Love Yourself,

Allison

 

 

 

2 thoughts on “Aging Gratefully

  1. JenStewie

    Thank you for being so honest. I think a lot of us can relate. As much as you try to convince yourself these things don’t matter, it can be hard at times. We are so much more than what we look like on the outside.

    Reply
    1. wakingupthirty

      Yes! Aren’t we so much more. I find today’s culture so focused on being youthful, and anti-aging – why? This is such a small snippet of our lives. I want to embrace the life that comes with aging. We should be grateful we get to do so.

      Reply

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