It was a month ago today that I turned 46. Admittedly not too exciting (maybe that’s why it’s taken a month to write about it:-). I awoke as I would on any other day of the week and entered the bathroom to brush my teeth, wash my face, you know the routine…..
Staring at me in the mirror were three grey hairs sprouting up from my mid-scalp like fresh asparagus waiting to be harvested. They were shouting for attention! First I laughed and wished myself a happy damn birthday under my breath. Seriously, I could care less about my age and am never shy about admitting how old I am. Most people tell me I don’t look my age, maybe that’s because I don’t act like I’m 46 nor do I dress like I’m 46. For some reason though, I was not as jazzed about this particular birthday since 46 is just not a “sexy” number to be if you know what I mean.
I haven’t read any of the 50 Shades books, nor do I know too much about them other than the fact that they are being read by every woman my age now living and breathing on the planet. They are supposed to be sexy, steamy and exciting. Maybe, like me, the whips and chains have long been retired and are covered with cobwebs in lieu of the sweatpants, old but comfy tee shirts and an occasional “headache”.
I’m not here to write about being old, my sex life or even my grey hair. I am hear to express more the celebration of who I have become at the ripe young age of 46. What used to matter doesn’t so much anymore. That which I used to conceal is now aired freely, like my dirty laundry. For this I am most proud as I have learned life’s lessons along the way. I am happy to share my wisdom and “experience” with others. I no longer search for the perfect answer, recipe for success, eating plan or exercise routine so that I can remain to myself and others a facade of who and what I really am, both physically and emotionally. Currently, I am more proud of admitting that I don’t know and don’t care about the trivial components of success (as some define it) and am concentrating on sharing the nuggets of information that I have cherished, learned, conquered and explored along my way.
I have always enjoyed teaching, for I was an aerobics instructor for over 15 years. I used to compete in races to prove that I was “something” or “someone” to myself, not to others. I needed reassurance that I WAS good, no matter what anyone else had to say…….it was ALL ABOUT ME. Convincing myself of something other than what my mind was telling me: that I was inadequate in some way, not “perfect”.
Why is it we are always trying to become someone else, some figment or form of ourselves that we are not living with in the present? We are always attempting to fix our faults but never celebrating our successes. I joke about my skinny, flat ass and wanting a more rounded bum a la Jennifer Lopez while friends grab their asses and tell me they are more than willing to share some of theirs!
My hope and desire for my 46 year young self is to continue to recognize, realize and appreciate my uniqueness, who I have become as an adult and woman and share that love with myself and others in an attempt to introduce them to those possibilities as well.
Life is to be lived and loved. To teach others your mistakes and not worry so much about what it looks like to be an imperfect human being. We should celebrate our imperfections as an expression of our own individuality and love ourselves for the accomplishments we have achieved, fueling our passion to reach for bigger and more exciting opportunities in our future. No matter what our number in years.
Whether you are twenty-six or sixty-six or wherever you are in life, take a breath in this moment and appreciate yourself for your life’s unique journey. You are the only one IN THE WORLD who will experience life in this way. Share your achievements, successes and failures with others as you have plenty to teach. You are worthy. Please accept this as my birthday gift to you and take it along as you celebrate your successes big and small.
Now excuse me as I have an appointment to get my hair highlighted;-)
At twenty we worry about what others think of us; at forty we don’t care about what others think of us; at sixty we discover they haven’t been thinking about us at all. — Author Unknown
“For the unlearned, old age is winter; for the learned, it is the season of the harvest.” –Hasidic saying