Life has a way of teaching us how to love ourselves through aging, an inevitable metamorphosis, whether we accept it or not.
I’m 69 years old. I’m proud of who I am, what i have achieved, and what i have contributed to my community. My age has never defined me, how i look, how I dress, how I act.
I know women who are younger than I am, that seem… well, older some how. This led me to a theory; maybe the way we perceive age is mainly, in part, due to how the women who raised us also perceived it? As child, I grew up with sisters who where 20 years older than me, through my eyes, the women in my family always seemed old and looked old. I thought they represented aging as slowing down until death.
I personally, like to perceive getting old as a promotion, or a victory celebrating what I have overcome throughout my life. What I began to understand was that maybe the resentment of aging is more psychological than physical. I am convinced that aging is not the end of a beautiful thing, but is the beautiful thing itself.
In spite of my upbringing, I am learning to dwell in the present, embracing each phase of my life for what it is, and what it has to offer, without resenting the years that I have yet to be graced with. When we grow older, we tend to only think of the end, we can lose sight of the fact that life is not about preparing for the end, but how we seize the years in between.
There will be days when I do not recognize the face of the woman I see in the mirror, although her eyes look the same. Despite that, I have decided that I will be mindful even now, not to burden my older years with dread. I know who I am, and i will not let my age or society dictate what I should be. I will live in the moment, and i will live my life to the fullest.
Article written 2021.