Sunday is the 30th day of August, which means that forty-one years ago on that date, an incredibly adorable and deliciously sweet chunk of a baby girl came howling into existence on this 3rd rock from the Sun. This is a picture of that little girl a few months after she'd unpacked her rattle and booties and settled in and adjusted to her new surroundings a bit.This is that girl today at 41.
I use the word "girl" because it's still very much the way I feel. Not that I don't experience moments when I feel womanly, because I most certainly do. I know that I'm an adult and for the most part, behave as such. But, the vision of Me that I hold in my mind's eye is one of a girl. I am still the girl who sometimes laughs too loudly and occasionally snorts when trying to stifle it. I am still the girl who dances with abandon (while sucking in my womanly tummy) and who still seems to be able to "shake it all night long."
Aging isn't scary to me. Growing old is.
Yes, I notice some subtle signs that I am older, but they don't make me feel old. If anything has contributed to the feeling of being a bit broken down in the past couple of years, it's the fact that I was actually broken in a few places after my accident. But, I know the popping in my hip that sounds like a ratchet is due to it having been fractured, and I know that my arm and shoulder sound like a bowl of Rice Krispies freshly doused with milk because it has been shattered and mended and re-mended. Yes, I use deep wrinkle cream between my eyes and across my forehead with the hope that it will somehow magically diminsh the lines that have appeared there, but I also don't regret those lines.
Forty-one feels like a favorite pair of broken-in Levis on a crisp autumn morning. In these jeans I am comfortable and confident, and although sometimes I think maybe I'd like to have a new pair, I know that those new jeans could never compare to my good old broken-in pair . In them I still feel sexy and cool, not insecure and fearful like the girl who used to wear them when they were new. I've been wearing these old jeans for awhile now, and I like who I've become in them.
I know that my skin will age and that the wrinkles will deepen and that the snaps, crackles and pops will increase until I sound like a one-woman band, but that's okay. It's not going to keep me from laughing and dancing and acting a bit too young for my age for as long as I possibly can. Because in the words of the great Jon Bon Jovi, "It's my life and it's now or never, 'cause I ain't gonna live forever."
Right on, Jon. Right on.