I’ve been reflecting on maturity lately. Aging hasn’t been all that good to me, mostly because I didn’t take very good care of myself when I was younger. Large weight swings, too much sun exposure, poor diet choices, bad exercise habits, injuries – all add up to issues I’m dealing with now.
Anybody who knows me knows that I am preoccupied by my weight, my frizzy hair, my stumpy stature, and all manner of things. Some of them I can manipulate, but don’t. Others, I’m stuck with. This body feels like a joke to me. And like most jokes, I don’t think it’s terribly funny.
For the longest time I have been fooling myself that I’m way heavier than I was when I got married. For a while there it was true. However, I’ve lost a fair bit of weight recently. It made me feel good, and I have been strutting around as if I had won a prize or something. But I’ve been looking at old pictures and comparing them to current ones and I realize that I currently weigh less than 10 pounds more than I did 16 years ago, and I look very much the same. While I look way heavier now than in those old pictures, most of those clothes pretty much fit. They don’t look that great, but I can wear them. Does 10 pounds really make that big a difference, or has my self perception changed so greatly? I mean, I used to think I was almost cute back then. Now, not so much. Either I wasn’t as cute as I thought I was back then, or getting older has done a number on me in ways not completely related to my weight.
Everything has shifted and it’s not going back. As much as I would like to be as slender and attractive as my sisters, that’s simply not in the cards. There isn’t enough time in my day to devote to it. Everyone who has sisters knows it’s a competition, and I have lost.
But there’s good with the bad. For example: folks say that when your hair starts turning grey/silver/white, it gets more wire-y and less manageable. Well, bonus! Mine was that way to start with. In fact, I think the white (yes! thank you!) hairs are softer and easier to style, yet maintain the curl I like. I like my dark hair, but I look forward to seeing what I will look like with a lighter head of curls.
Also, I’m more emotionally stable than I used to be. That’s a huge plus right there. In fact, someone asked me today to chat with his wife about how things have changed for me since I was her age. She’s going through a lot of the same things I did and he thinks that since I “have it all together” that I can give her some sense of how she can get past the roadblocks she is facing. I think its flattering that he asked. Not sure about the wisdom of doing it, but it never hurts to make a new friend so I might at least approach it that way if I do.
The thing I notice most though, is that I’m not afraid of much anymore. Not for myself anyway. If I want to try a new thing, I try it. Who cares if I’m too old, or too short, or too fat, right? The last thing I want for the second half of my life is to regret anything anything else. I’ve done my fair share of that already.