As I approach the end of my
50th 49th year, I contemplate my looks and wonder how to keep the ravages of time at bay. I managed to keep a size 8 figure well into my 30's but now sport size 12 as I end my 40's. As far as wrinkles go, I have been blessed, in spite of the daily assault that the sun in Florida provides, I still receive compliments on my complexion. I no longer smoke and, this vice given up in my 20's. I have been known to cadge a cigarette while intoxicate. I have not given up the demon liquor but restrict my intake to weekends only and the only 3 glasses of whatever is being served. I quit wearing makeup long ago and restrict my daily ablutions to moisturizer and a swipe of Burts Bees colored lip gloss. I pluck my brows at random.
My hair definitely gives away my age. I tried coloring it when the gray manifested itself. The results were alway unflattering, the maintenance tedious. I developed a white streak at the part at my forehead and decided that my looks were not so repulsive as to turn strangers heads, so I have decided that gray is the new blond.
Gray hair was the topic of conversation in our small office. My two colleagues color their hair. I have also decided to grow out my tresses, one more time for old times sake. This is where the rub come. I was told that this decision would seal my fate in the aging department. I was told you had to have stunning good looks to get away with a mane of gray.
This sent me to the nearest search engine to prove them wrong. I found countless articles on women abandoning the peroxide and the hair dye in order to embrace the hair they were destined to have. Apparently, the streets of Manhattan are teaming with baby boomer's sporting silver, platinum, and all shades in between.
On a recent visit to Barnes and Noble, I noticed a book on the new release table called Going Gray: What I learned About Beauty, Sex, Work, and Motherhood, Authenticity and Everything Else That really Matters, quite a statement in the title alone. I have not yet read the book but it has received a fair amount of press and favorable reviews. Two tables away I found another book called Going Gray, Looking Great: The Modern Woman's Guide to Unfading Glory. Maybe I was onto something. Maybe women are finally embracing their age. After all, we've earned it. Does it matter what others think or is it about how we feel?
I've come to the conclusion that I still have friends, men still pay attention, and I can still gain employment, in spite of looking my age. My gray gives me a quiet self assurance and peace in how I perceive myself. The salad days of my youth are long gone but I have the wisdom of years to look forward to.
Even Barbie had to age sometime.