I Am Getting Older

I am getting older.  And it is showing.  I see it in the gray hairs that are popping up with increasing frequency, the lines around my eyes, and my forehead, once smooth, now has a road map of creases that seem to have popped up overnight.  And ever since I have noticed them, it is the first thing my eyes go to when I look in the mirror.  I am more vain than I like to admit.

It seems like it came out of nowhere, but when I reflect, I think it has been coming on for some time.  There were a few times when I thought I saw a gray hair and I then I thought, no, that hair must be just REALLY blond.  Or maybe it is coated in hairspray.  A few years ago, my co-worker suggested that I get a new picture taken for my badge since I had been with the company so long.  I scoffed at the thought and told her that I look exactly the same as I did when I started at age 24.  But the patients that mistake me for a high school student have lessened in frequency and now I cannot remember the last time that it happened.  And it used to happen a lot, and other than the fact that they clearly lacked confidence in my ability, I liked it.

Seeing the changes that are happening remind me of the fact that I am aging and I will continue to age.  On the surface, it seems to be about my appearance, but I think it is more, because even if I look young, my body and mind are still getting older.  I will not always be this young, or have this much energy, or run this (moderately) fast.  And will I still be okay with that?

I think that I will be.  When I look back on the person that I was when I was 20, I sort of cringe.  I made not great decisions.  I was arrogant, all the while being ignorant and lacking self-esteem.  I did not like myself that much and I did not take care of myself.  I was selfish, I was careless, and a bit of a snot.

I have grown a lot in these last 15 years and I like myself a lot better these days, gray hairs and wrinkles and all.  I am immeasurably stronger, wiser, and happier.  I am more responsible financially, emotionally, and socially.  And I could have never got to this place without all the years in between.  Life takes practice.  It would be wonderful to be 20 and have the experience of a 70 year old, but as they say, youth is wasted on the young, or at least it was in my case.

And now, I am about to be 35.  It is halfway to 70, and that seems like a big deal, so I am having a party.  (If you know my address, you are invited!)  I want to celebrate my age, not hide from it.  As many years as I can get, I am taking them, and I am going to so as much as I can with the time that I get.  Bring on middle age!  Okay, maybe I am not ready to refer to myself as middle-aged just yet.

About jillo31

I always wanted to write the great American novel. I've come to the realization that that may not happen. Instead, I'm going to write about my life as a working mom to three boys. I figure in ten years, I won't remember what these days are like. I want to record my everyday victories and struggles.
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