Growing old gracefully
"Don't resent growing old.
Some people never have the opportunity."
We live in an era where women no longer accept growing old gracefully.
Just turn on the television or open up a magazine and it won't take long to hear the messages "combat the signs of ageing" or "defy the ageing process".
When I was young, older women dresses like older women, they wore makeup like an older woman, wore older women shoes etc... These days older women want to dress and look like their daughters or granddaughters.
Many see ageing as something that one needs to go into battle over as if fighting off a disease. We find ageing a threat and a sign of decreased worth in society. No one wants to get old . . . but we will all get old at some point, no matter what we do. No matter how many tubs of creams or potions we use, we will still get old. Even botox might remove the wrinkles, they don't stop the ageing process.
No one live forever.
Getting older doesn't mean you can't have fun, laugh out loud, be silly, go out and about and enjoy life. One doesn't need to sit at home, get old and die. What it does mean is accepting the ageing process as part of living and gracefully move into our older years without being afraid of it.
"Age isn't how old you are but how you feel" (Gabriel Garcia Marques)
We need to remember that in 1900 (in Australia at least), the average life expectancy for men and women was just over 50, now it is 80. We have many more years to live than those of our ancestors. So lets LIVE and stop trying to turn back the clock. Lets enjoy all those added years, not everyone has the privilege of living to old age.
That doesn't mean not watching what we eat, stopping exercise or not taking care of ourselves. It means remaining healthy but living life and enjoying each chapter that God gives us. At each part of our life we have special roles and in our older years we have the role of grandmother (or great aunt) and that is a very special time to enjoy. Its when we pass on all our wisdom to our grandchildren or great nieces and nephews. It is when we spoil them, tell them stories and have fun. However God had a very special role for older women - the role of teacher, passing on our knowledge to younger women . . .
The older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things — that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed. (Titus 2:3-5)
Here is three photos of women all in their older years. These women stand out because they are dressing for their age, their makeup suits their age and their hair is natural. They look beautiful and they are older women. This is what we are striving for — showing that being older doesn't mean looking like we aren't living. It means we aren't dressing and behaving like younger women. . . the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things —
Photo 1: A woman aged 100 photo by Karsten Thormaehlen, Photo 2: Helen Mirren Photo 3: Rosa Park