Friday, May 27, 2011
Like a Fine Wine
(Picture taken by me in Georgetown, DC.)
It would be presumptuous of me to say that I'm like a fine wine, but I want to talk about aging in general. Why is it that perceptions agree that wine gets better with age while people do not? People, specially women, are under the age pendulum. That is, each year is a pass of the pendulum. As you grow older, the blade gets closer. Until your "shelf life" is done, and, swoosh! You are doomed to conservative mom jeans and tasteful twin sets forever.
I disagree. While I am only 27, I feel much better now about myself than I did when I was 24 or 19 or 16. I've heard so many people say that high school was "the best time in their life". Aren't they cutting themselves off a little early? Raising the bar too much? Ultimately, they're carving out a self-fulfilling prophecy. In their minds, nothing will compare to those glory days, no matter how many fantastic opportunities cross their way.
We should be like wine. We should say we are such. We get better with age. We grow wiser, settle into our figures, and go about what we want with great determination. After years of struggling with confidence and body issues, I can slowly feel them melting away. Sure, sometimes I look in the mirror and those old teenage/young adult fears pop back, but they flutter away in a second. At look at myself and say, "You're pretty." And while sometimes it's still hard to believe (thanks to years of abusive friendships/relationships and low self-esteem), it's easier to look in the mirror and agree.
I refuse to believe that just because I'm nearing 30, I'm old news. I refuse to believe that being anything over a size 4 is a failure and that I'm not beautiful because of it. I refuse to believe that there are no chances left and that I will never achieve what I'm working for. I refuse to believe all the negative energy that soul-sucking people mete out, simply because it just takes away so much time and effort from the pursuits one really wants. It's a waste! Don't throw away your time thinking about these things, just concentrate on the here and now.
The glory days are not done. I repeat, not done. Far from it. Each day, we are carving our own paths and heading in the right direction. Our direction. Following our dreams, whatever they may be. I know mainstream media is trying to hype that 30/40/50 are the new 20/30, but guess what? Behind the marketing lies a veritable truth. We do get better with age. We learn, mature, and grow into ourselves, becoming more beautiful and stronger thanks to the lessons learned and the poise we've developed.
So let's go get a glass of wine and celebrate!