Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Age Appropriate

BethanyC - Self Portrait August 2012

I'm a bit obsessed with aging.  This is nothing new.  Somewhere I have a poem I wrote when I was seventeen, about growing old.  The gist of the poem is, in the years to come, when I look in the mirror will I see a seventeen-year-old looking back at me or will my mental image adjust and allow me to see myself as I am in the present.  I knew even then, that often the people young folks perceive as "old" don't feel at all "old" themselves.

I am a believer in "You are only as old as you feel" but the other side of that is you don't really want to spend your adult life embarrassing yourself because you refuse to acknowledge that you don't look or feel quite the same way you felt when you were twenty.   Does anyone really want to be that person that is instantly recognizable as the victim of a mid-life crises?

However, the truth is that part of me is still that silly romantic girl that wants to take a book and sit in fields of wildflowers, that spent hours hiking alone through the woods with her dog, that baked cookies to take to school, that gave her first boyfriend scraps of words and pencil sketches.  Part of me isn't.   In fact, look closely at the photo above, taken a week or so ago and see an abundance of silver hair scattered among the dark, lines along my cheeks, and lines around my eyes.  I'm constantly trying to reconcile those two things, aging and that silly young girl trapped inside this breaking body that has bad knees, a worse back and occasional twinges of arthritis.   It seems so strange.

In Another Note: I know some people realize that I'm sitting down on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, watching Hurricane Isaac out my window.  As you can see, I still have electricity and internet, for now.  So it can't be too bad here.  Where I am, we haven't lost power although I've seen that some of my friends closer to the coast have.  Also, I've heard from the sister in New Orleans that they've been out of power for quite awhile.  Isaac is VERY slow moving.  So, we will be at this for a bit longer.


  1. It is what it is. Sure, physically we age...we see it on our faces and in our hair color and feeel it in our bones, too. But what you can't see is wisdom, which comes from life's experiences. The young might be leaner and stronger, but there is no way they can compete with your wisdom.

    I wouldn't sweat the aging thing. You look pretty hot right now. ;)


  2. Thanks Scott. I have another birthday approaching... it always makes me a little ansy.

  3. Oh I must confess that while I maintain my functional age well, I can see the effects of aging all over my body. My residual self image lingers but I cannot do the things I once did in my teens and 20's. I now have to pick my spots. If I surf all day you can expect me to crash at home perhaps without eating...

    Anyhow I am happy to say that aging is simply something that occurs slowly so if you feel young then you are young...


  4. Bobby, thanks for stopping by. I certainly don't have quite to energy I once had... but I do feel young (for the most part). :)


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