Isn't it ironic that the more wisdom and knowledge you gain by growing older, the more your physical body begins to deteriorate? It's a damn shame. Just when you feel like you're starting to finally take pleasure in the seasons of time or start feeling an abundance of gratitude for the life you've lived, you realize that your body is aging - rapidly.
Whether it's the lines around the sides of your mouth, the angry-looking - now permanent - furrow between your brows, your thinning hair, or the visible rings around the skin on your neck - by the time you hit 40, those characteristics begin to arrive without mercy.
Of course are ways in which to slow down or conceal the look of getting older. You can eat better, drink more water, exercise, use effective anti-wrinkle creams, or even go so far as to purchase cosmetic surgery.
But in the end, all of these awkward physical chapters that come with aging will find you no matter how fast you try and run.
When you hit mid-life, you realize that people don't stop and stare at you as perhaps they did before simply for being attractive.
As a woman, it can be easy to feel like you're disappearing into the black hole of "used to be".
Unless your life isn't built around your looks. Unless you have an obsession for things other than what you see in the mirror. Unless your self-worth isn't wrapped up in whether or not a sexual partner thinks you're pretty.
Now that I'm 40, I wish I could tell my younger self not to obsess so much about looks and spend more time cultivating a solid, stable, and passionate life filled with interests, ambition, creativity, and fulfillment outside of the superficial.
But that's easy to say now, of course.
Fortunately, I am only 40. I still have so much to look forward to. I just need to live my life alongside the acceptance that I have those lines around my mouth because I had so much to smile about in my life. I have those frown wrinkles because I worried and had to figure out tough situations. I have lines around my neck because I took a lot of pleasure in sunbathing at one time.
All of those embedded lines in my skin came about from living life. All of those lines, scars, sun spots and stretch marks remind me of how I got to where I am today.
If we lived our lives and aged with no marks to show for it, would it really be better? If we were always perfect on the outside with smooth skin and unblemished bodies would we really be happier?
When I look down at my somewhat lopsided belly I do think I should probably do more crunches, but then I also remember what that belly gave me. It gave me the most inspiring little person I will ever meet in my entire life.
Right now the best thing any woman can do for herself is make peace with all of the lopsided bits, wrinkles, rolls, and oddities. Realize that without those marks you wouldn't have the stories to tell or the memories to keep.
In our youth, we often take beauty for granted. When we age we finally understand what being beautiful truly means. It means you wove a life of captivating events and adventures. It means you know who you are. It means that in spite of all your mistakes and aging imperfections, you look in a mirror and see triumph. You see a goddess. And you've come a long way baby.
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