aging

The Beauty of Getting Older

I just read a joke in Reader’s Digest at my allergist’s office, and I proceeded to sit there and giggle for a half hour.  I giggled while walking to my car, and giggled all the way back to work. Once at work, I laughed so hard, I could barely recite it to my co-worker.

What was the joke, you may be wondering?

-“What did one snowman say to the other?”

-“I smell carrots, too”

And that has had me laughing for almost an hour now.  I can guarantee that I will have the same outburst of laughter when i attempt to tell it to Paul tonight.

I love this about myself.  I find humor and joy in the simplest things (eg: this joke).  It is something that has only gotten worse throughout the years, and I believe it to be part of the beauty of getting older: being able to see the humor in things. 

Thus far, I have loved aging. I am not afraid of getting older, or going gray or wrinkled.  Growing old is a privileged, and I am eager to discover what each year of life will teach me. 

Just starting the last year of my twenties, I feel so much more confident in my own skin (though I am at my heaviest weight.  I am more focused on being healthy).  I am more aware of the value within myself, and know myself better than I ever have.

Scars, beauty marks, mistakes from our past, walls we have bumped into; flaws on the surface and below, they are just all part of the process.  I like to think of it as “earning my stripes”.  This past year, I gained three new scars from my surgery which have turned into red lines on both sides of my lower-abdomen as well as a big red dot on the upper-inside of my belly button.   A few years ago, these may have bothered me and made me self-conscious, but today, I don’t give them a single thought.  

They help tell my story, and will continue to do so for the rest of my life.  The beginning of laugh-lines and crows feet that are forming will only get deeper each day with every smile and every giggle, and I love that.

Don’t be afraid to get older, and don’t be afraid to earn your stripes.  Each year that passes is just another year to learn to love yourself more, and hopefully find the humor and beauty in everything.

I am excited to get to know myself more in this last trip around the sun in my twenties.  My thirties will just be a whole new chapter in earning my stripes, and I am sure, laughing at the most ridiculous things.

“The world does not deliver meaning to you.  You have to decide what you want and need and must do.”

-Zadie Smith

“My Best Friend’s Wedding”

While getting some work done this morning, I decided to put on an old favorite flick of mine for some back ground noise, “My Best Friend’s Wedding”.  

I love this movie. It’s charming, set in my favorite city, and hilarious.  

This movie came out when I was in middle school, and I remember thinking about how Julia Roberts and Dermot Mulroney just had it together. They are on the verge of turning 28 and they just seemed to be so adult!

Julia has a great job as a food writer, lives in Manhattan, and alas, is not married 3 weeks before her 28th birthday.  28 seemed so adult to me!  A great point to have your life together, career set (I was never focused on needing to be married yet, that has never phased me), but man, 28!  So far off at the time, and I don’t want to call it “old”, because I never thought of it like that, but again, just so “adult”. 

Yet here I am, 3 months away from my 29th birthday, feeling so not adult.  I realize that adult is completely a frame of mind, but it is just funny to me to think of how the perception of age changes as we get older.  

I don’t think most people ever think of themselves as adults.  We are just a bunch of 14-year-olds with car keys and checking accounts.  

As a kid, a teen, even in my early twenties I kept expecting there to be a birthday when I finally felt like an adult. 18? Legally an adult and can purchase porn, lottery tickets and tobacco. 21? Can legally drink.  23?  Just seemed like a good number to me for adulthood to begin. 25? Can rent a car. 27 for sure would be adulthood.  

But no, here I am, almost 29, and fairly content with the fact that no matter what kind of car I have, where my career is at, or what my level of responsibility is, I will never have the “adult” mind frame.  

In my eyes, the best adults never do.