It’s hard for me to believe that I’ll be married 10 years this summer. It doesn’t really bother me to get older- I think age is just a number- but time just goes so quickly. There are days when I think “Wasn’t I just in high school a few years ago?”, and then I remember that it’s been more than a few years and my oldest will start Kindergarten this fall.
When I look in the mirror, I’m like most other women who are critical of what they see. My body is healthy and strong, but let’s be honest: I’ll never look exactly like I did before having three kids, no matter how hard I try. I’ve got circles under my eyes from sleepless nights with babies and brown spots on my face from being careless about wearing sunscreen. Although I don’t love these things, I do my best to accept that regardless, I can still be fit and happy.
I’ve never been one to dwell on my looks. Sometimes I envy those moms at school who always look so put-together, while I’m usually dressed in sweatpants with my hair up in a ponytail. For me it’s all about choices. I’d rather spend 30 minutes exercising than styling my hair in the morning. Exercising makes me feel good, while that other mom feels good because she put in the time to look good.
I think part of this attitude is why the aging process doesn’t bother me. I know I’m getting older and things are going to change. Training for races or getting stronger might not be quite as easy as it once was. I can’t just assume that most clothes will look fine on me- I have to find clothes to fit my shape (which is different than it was before kids, even though I’m the same weight). For the most part, I’m okay with that, but there are other people in my life who seem to struggle with aging.
One family member has said she doesn’t want to celebrate her birthday anymore because she’s gotten too old. She’s in the best shape of her life, but is always very critical of her body. She has explored different cosmetic procedures, hoping to regain some of the look of her youth. I think it’s sad that she can’t be more accepting of the changes age brings, and just be happy living in the moment. I love birthdays- I don’t care if I’m turning 10 or 100. I just want to be around to celebrate as many of them as possible.
Do you struggle with the physical changes aging brings? How do you cope with them? Have you learned to accept it, or do you find yourself constantly trying to fight it?