Growing Old is Getting Old?!

     Every time I sign into Facebook it seems someone is promising a new product that will help you achieve a flat belly, regain vitality and get younger looking skin. It seems we are trying everything we can to avoid getting old. Can someone please explain to me why getting old is so bad? I’ll admit, now that I am approaching my mid-thirties, I am starting to see things I never saw before – looser skin, crow’s feet and some creepy purple veins that I might want to sport only on Halloween. Often I revisit old photos of friends and family and I see a younger, tighter me. She was great. And I am still great. I consider myself an updated version; Kristin 3.0.  What I think people need to realize is, no matter how hard you try, YOU WILL NEVER BE 25 AGAIN. I know, that was harsh. Deal with it. You can wrap yourself in magic towels, pop vitamins or drink shakes and still you will age.

The world keeps spinning and Father Time keeps his watch. I think it’s fascinating to watch how people age, especially through photographs. I think I have looked at Nicholas Nixon’s books hundreds of time. Click HERE to read an article about him in the NYT. He did a series of portraits of his wife and her sisters. Over time he’s taken forty photographs of them. When you line them all up you can see subtle differences in each girl’s face and hair. It’s magical. I imagine each line on their face was a mark left by grief, anger, joy or laughter. Imagine that!

We are moving through time. We may not realize it because we are busy with school, work and LIFE, but it’s true. I envision earning wrinkles every time I smile. If that is the case, I predict many, many wrinkles, because not a day goes by that I am not smiling.  We are eager to “buy time” – take this product and it will set the clock back or exercise real hard and your heart will be healthy. The latter may be true but I see buying time in a different light. Sometimes, when I am stressed with life’s duties I stop, throw in the towel and take a walk. Going outdoors always makes me feel small, but part of something much larger. It is a good reality check. Some days I stop and look at my husband doing some mundane thing and it warms my heart.  I like to think these moments help buy some time and offset other stressful events in my life that have left their mark.  This is why I think wrinkles are so beautiful. They are battle scars left between good and bad, happy and sad.

“Grow old with me! The best is yet to be.”
― Robert Browning

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