This Forth of July I hit the big 5-0. People keep telling me that It’s just another number, but it’s a bit of a Confidence Conflict right now and hearing, “it’s no big deal” doesn’t really help. True that a birthday really only makes us one day older, but reaching a new decade is difficult.
Aging and body-image
As our body ages, wrinkles and sags, our beauty changes. This is life, and really, I’m ok with that.
I mean I should be, right? It’s the message of Confident Beauty: BE and LET BE.
Every flower is beautiful, wether it is budding, blooming or fragrantly falling apart.
It’s a shame when young people don’t apreciate their beauty. So many of us grow old wishing we had enjoyed our youth instead of being so concerned about imperfections and disappointments. It takes awhile for most of us to grow up and let go of the pressure to impress everyone. It helps to realize that our beauty is our gift to our husband. If he accepts us for who we are, then that should be enough.
I love watching my husband age, in fact I find it very attractive. I call him my grey guy. I am blessed to have a man content with what he gets. If we enjoy watching our spouse mature, then why should we doubt that they could be content with us growing older? Of course we’d rather have stunning beauty that amazes our man, but maybe it’s time we just accept his words of affirmation as truth.
Aging and Identity
As I approach half of a century, I guess I’m realizing that fifty is so, well, mid-life. It’s too old to be free, foolish and fun but too young to be too reserved and too young to complain about aging. It’s too old to care about appearance but too young to give up on looking good. Yes, fifty is a number, but it is not just a number.
It’s a transition.
Mid-life is a season of a lot of major shifts:
As our children grow, our significance in their lives changes. We experience the pain of transition as they begin to leave the nest. We long to be needed.
As our parents age, we fear, or experience, the painful transition of becoming their caregivers or of continuing life without them. We long for more time with them.
With tuition to pay, retirement to work toward, and the pressure of accomplishing our dreams before it’s too late, we don’t have time to grow old or feel weak. We must keep fighting the good fight. We long for time to pause and play but then again, our friends aren’t available anyway. They are running hard, too.
Aging and self-confidence
As I’ve been working through my little mid-life-crisis, I’ve found myself challenged to take my own advice.
When women and girls have Image Issues, I encourage them to step away from the makeup mirror and take in their whole image. When we focus on disproportions and imperfections, they torment us with Confidence Conflicts. Most people don’t even notice our flaws because they see us as a whole person; and we don’t focus on theirs, so why are we so hard on ourselves?
We do the same thing with seasons of life. Maybe that’s why birthdays can be so hard. Suddenly the number comes into focus and we stare it down and allow it to discourage us when “it’s only a number!”
Perhaps you, too, are dealing with the transition of kids still utterly dependent–yet defiantly independent–and parents growing dependent–while denying their need for help. You are sandwiched between two generations who don’t want to need you. Or maybe you are single and longing for marriage; or married, and longing for kids. Whatever your season of life, I encourage you to step back and consider the whole picture. It seems to me that life is much more beautiful in the full-length view than it is in the magnifying mirror.
Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. -Matthew 11:28, 29
Tell me, is there something that has helped you to age with confidence? If you have any words of wisdom, please share it on one of my social medias. You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Linked In, Goodreads , or visit my website at http://catrinawelch.com for more information.