I am 55 years old. It sounds ancient, I know. But inside of me is the real budding of a flower lay dormant, now finally breaking forth and furling it’s petals-beautiful and fragrant.
That is what growing older is supposed to be about. Self-awareness, other -awareness, and world-awareness, We go through stages just like Maslov’s pyramid of self-actualization.
Could it be like finally arriving at your own debutante- your coming out party, but gray hair and saggy skin are the paradox to your beautiful, exquisite gown glittering in the night?
I know more now about how humans work, especially me. I have more compassion, more tolerance and less judgement than when in my twenties and thirties, when I was trying so hard to contstruct a life whose idea of measurements and boundaries, ought to’s and should have’s promised a life of bliss.
Bliss to me is being comfortable in my own skin, but not being sloppy in it. Respecting the sacredness of where life’s journey has brought you, but never getting overwhelmed or in a state of ambivalence.
Love and acceptance has been the biggest gain so far. I appreciate my children more as they grapple with life as adults. I have more empathy and understanding of my mother and her own strengths and weaknesses. And it feels good-not too judge or try and control the outcomes of other’s actions.
I remember this inspirational book that was popular when I was a teenager. It was a book called golden apples and had proverb quotes in it. It spoke of how the golden apples of old age were the sweetest. At least that’s is what I remembered. I could not grasp how that was possible, I was a young woman ready to take the world on. Funny though, the world was taking me on more. It is only now that I understand I am finally, really ready to take on the world. I am equipped and appropriately supplied to be a part of the adventure.
I suppose that is the fountain of youth- the wonderment of what life has for you as long as you stay curious,open, and forgiving. Being pliable the older you grow is the trick. I can still do a deep plie` at the barre, or stand and touch my head to my knees, but just as importantly, can I see the world in a thousand different reflections of others? Can I look at the tattooed girl with ink up to her elbows and spattered across her chest without judgement, to the unique creation she is?
Only by opening my heart to God’s infinite love for me and for others.