You spend your 20s wishing you were older/prettier/wiser, had your education/career/relationships sorted out. Insecurities galore. You get to your 30s. hopefully some of the fog has cleared, you’ve met someone, married, you are off to having children which is a random circle of gaining weight, losing weight, breastfeeding, babies, toddlers, etc. The second you take a breath and think I got this! something changes and you realize you know nothing and are keeping it together by prayer and duct tape. So ta-da! all of a sudden you are 40. Doesn’t feel much different. Kids are bit older. House is nicer. You are more settled in your marriage and hopefully have been a good girl with sunscreen and retinol and can age more or less gracefully.
And it doesn’t seem bad at all. You are still in shape, much more secure in yourself than you ever were. You have great girlfriends, you know how to love and how to be loved. You understand that very very few things in life are black and white. There’s clarity. There’s also a sharp acknowledgment that from now on things sort of roll really fast. Your parents start having issues all of a sudden. Friends struggle with issues you never even heard of let alone knew to be afraid of. Medical stuff happens, much more frequently than before. You develop a tennis elbow that is extremely slow to heal. Maybe you’ll also get another tennis injury because you didn’t stretch!!!! Bam, inflamed hip/knee/IT band and an ortho doc, barely older than you, laconically informs you that it’s due to weak butt muscles (ha! one more thing to add to the list), weak pelvis from child birth and getting older! Older! Me!?!?! Fudge!!! And then there’s just general shit that doesnt happen like it use to because you are getting older. Boobs. If you had kids and breastfed (which I did) they sag. If you had bigger boobs, they sag, smaller ones sort of concave. And if you didn’t breastfeed, gravity is still a bitch. You bend over to look at the hand held mirror and your face just sort of droops.
And then it’s time for your mammogram, because you are 40 now. And you will now it’s time because these suckers have been so freaking painful before your periods and ob-gyn quickly points out that women in their 40s go through lots of hormonal changes. And they tell you that in the room where book about menopause is right next to book about baby’s first year. So you know for sure you are on the other side of things. I don’t know who the hell invented this torture machine but it’s effing miserable. Like for realz, you need to stand there half naked while the machine completely flattens the hell out of your boobs. It hurts! 12 lb shelf on your breasts. That’s when this happens.
But you are probably wiser now. With better handbags and shoes. But damn, do we not appreciate whatever stage we are in. Are 50s better or worse? Stand by I’ll report back in a decade. Meanwhile, use spf, eat well and exercise and get a check up here and there.