in: Wellness

Middle-Aged (& Happy With it)

Middle aged is not synonymous with sad and dull. There’s no age limit on loving yourself and feeling fabulous.

So, I hear Julia Roberts doesn’t plan to get plastic surgery. I know this because it made the news. Imagine that. A woman in her 40s has chosen not to have plastic surgery and it makes the news.

I don’t pay much attention to Hollywood or fashion or celebrity culture, but I do know something about being a middle-aged woman. There, I’ve said it. I am middle aged. I’ve got a few years on Julia Roberts, too. I’m not sure when we officially transition from middle age to senior status, but I won’t shy away from that, either.

Time quotes the 47-year-old actress as saying that for older women in Hollywood, not getting a plastic surgery touchup is a “big risk.” I guess in her line of work it truly is, so good for her. Not that society is kinder to women outside of Hollywood.

The amount of time, energy, and money that goes into the quest for eternal youth and beauty boggles the mind. Why? We’ve been young. We’ve done that already. I embrace middle age. In fact, I love it.

I’m comfortable in my own skin. Sure, I have a few more facial lines than I used to, but so what? I don’t look 21…or 31…and I wouldn’t even pass for 41. I don’t need to. I look my age. More importantly I feel my age. I don’t mean physically, although that’s certainly true on some days more than on others. I mean emotionally and spiritually.

Maturity is a wonderful thing. If you play your cards right and try to learn from your experiences, you really do get older and wiser, not just older. Middle age is as much a milestone as going from child to teenager or from teenager to young adult. By the time you reach middle age, you can look at life through a different lens. It’s worthy of celebration, not embarrassment.

By now, you’ve probably weathered a few storms and found strength you never knew you had. You’ve likely lost a few people along the way. Perhaps health issues have forced you to face your own finite time here on earth. If you don’t let them defeat you, these experiences crystalize how short and precious life is, allowing you to see what really matters. That’s certainly been the case for me. When you learn to recognize that, letting go of your physical youthfulness isn’t all that bad.

Middle age doesn’t mean you’re no longer attractive or not sexy. It’s a different kind of attractiveness, a new phase of life to be enjoyed and cherished. It shows on your face. Lines. Wrinkles. Character. Whatever you want to call it.

Having survived MS and cancer, I’m damn happy to be alive in my 50s and I hope to find out what it’s like to grow old. I don’t need plastic surgery to feel good about myself and I prefer television shows and movies that portray middle-aged women as we really are—vibrant, interesting, multi-dimensional human beings who are okay just the way we are.


Written by Ann Pietrangelo

The article was originally published with Care2; republished with the kindest permission. 

[image: via shutterstock]

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