Wednesday, March 24, 2010

On Turning Fifty-Six






I shouldn't be posting yet another picture of myself as a youngun' but truth be told, the best photos I have of myself are all from my childhood. I became very un-photogenic as an adult. Either that or I'm a lot uglier than I realize and I'm taking perfectly good pictures.

I turned 56 yesterday. Next year I will no longer be able to say that I'm in my mid-50's -- I will then be in my late 50's. How did I get so old? On the inside I feel like I have just recently started to "get it". I wonder if most people are at this stage of awareness earlier in life. I assume that is the case, but I am probably wrong.

The other day I saw my reflection in a mirror... a magnification mirror... in bright natural daylight. I was shocked. I'm getting these weird wrinkles on my face in places that don't crease when I smile or frown. What's up with that? I can understand wrinkles that are created when you move your facial muscles a certain way over and over, but the existence of these new wrinkles is a complete mystery to me. And don't even get me started on the problems with my neck.

Elasticity. You don't really think about it until you find it missing.

And how about age spots? What a strange phenomenon. At first, you might tell yourself that you're just sporting a nice new sprinkling of freckles, but come on, who are we kidding. And can somebody, anybody, tell me why women need extra nose hairs when they get older??? Is it a cosmic joke or something? Or did the Almighty think it would be helpful if women could relate with men on a new level?

Despite the fact that the degeneration of my body is a runaway train, I really don't mind getting older. I've always looked younger than my age, which I absolutely hated growing up. When you're 16 you don't want people thinking you're 12. That just isn't flattering. But when you're, say, 45, you don't mind it if people think you're 35. When I'm out with my granddaughter people are usually surprised to find out that I'm not her mother. They say, "You don't look old enough to be a grandmother." Well, if I had had my daughter at 20 (which I did not) and then my daughter had had her baby when she was 20 (which she did not), then I'd only be 40 when I became a grandmother, so what, I always wonder, is a grandmother supposed to look like? I know without a doubt that I don't look as young as 30. But still, I'm flattered, and I always say thank you for the compliment as I try to slowly back away from the person so they won't begin studying my face looking for signs of age, because I guarantee you they will find it.

7 comments:

Meagain said...

You looked in a magnification mirror in broad daylight? NOBODY should do that after 18! Yeah, I think you might be wrong about others reaching the "getting it" level of awareness earlier in life. What really hurts is when you realize with each passing year that you're not even close to "getting it" when you thought you already had. Lynne, your writing is wonderful, funny and oh so real. I've missed your blogging.

Lynne Countenance Jewelry / BeadyIze said...

Yeah, I know, it was a dumb move but curiosity got the better of me!

Wander to the Wayside said...

I'm turning 62 this month, for which I'm grateful considering the alternative. However, as you said, there are some wierd things going on! I've also looked younger than my age, but just recently I've started getting that crepe-y old lady skin on my arms and legs, and it just drives me crazy. And the thinning of the face, especially the lips, really gets to me. I guess the most you can do is just try to look well groomed and have a good blusher and lipstick on! I think we have things now that help us look younger that our grandparents didn't have, as any grandmother I knew as a kid was white-headed and very old looking in general!

Carol said...

LOL! I swear you and I are twins!!! I could have written this post, Lynne!! (I'm SURE that men invented mirrors...don't you think?!)

Lynne Countenance Jewelry / BeadyIze said...

Linda: Crepe-y is the perfect description. Why, why, why? I guess it's the old dust-to-dust thing. I'm getting dustier every year!

Carol: Yes! Didn't men also invent pantyhose and numerous other torture devices? :)

Valerie (discerningchichi) said...

Hi am following your blog now and having just turned 50 am loving this post (plus the one about weight)!

Lynne said...

Thanks Valerie! Weight and age: something so many of us 'bond' over. :)

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