Why ageing is a privilege
When do we start to care about ageing? I don’t remember noticing turning 22, or even caring much when I hit the big 30. But a few things have happened in my life recently that have made me consider age. My age and the age of others.
In a few months time I’ll turn 36, and I’ll officially be closer to 40 than 30. In fact, a few weeks ago we attended the 40th birthday of a friend. It was a fabulous party but I found myself saying on a few occasions: ‘Are we now at the age when we are going to more 40th birthday parties than weddings?’. I gave birth to a baby boy in January. He is gorgeous and growing yet I have been reluctant to take down the new baby cards - not wanting to admit that he is growing up before my very eyes. Age is something that none of us can escape.
But when I recently lost a family member, long before their old age, it made me question if we want to halt this process and should we not indeed be embracing and celebrating it? We are so obsessed with preventing the ageing process that I wonder if we ever stop to consider the alternative - dying young.
I have never been desperately bothered by the number on my passport, but recently I have made a conscious decision to celebrate the fact that I am indeed getting older, because it is actually a privilege that not everyone gets to experience.
And I am not alone in these pro ageing thoughts. I recently read an amazing interview with Hollywood's Drew Barrymore, who sees ageing as a luxury - teaching her young daughters not to fear ageing but celebrate it.
And of course, the beauty industry is keeping pace with this shift in attitudes, with many brands ditching terms such as 'anti-ageing' in favour of more positive terms such as radiance boosting, or targeting products at older skin.
Of course I do think there is such a thing as ageing well, but that is not restricted to the lines on your face, or the lack of them. Instead, I see ageing well as a way of accepting your biological age, but not letting it define you. Constantly reviewing your style, your attitude and your approach to life is surely more likely to keep you feeling and looking young than eliminating your laughter lines.
I am thrilled to be approaching my 36th birthday - I love the mid 30s version of myself. I know who I am, what I like and, more importantly, everything that I am capable of. My achievements grow every day, and I can only hope they will continue to do so. I don't feel lesser as my date of birth chugs further in to the distance; if anything, I feel more confident and determined to enjoy each moment of my life. A message I am intent on passing on to my daughter, and my son... as ageing isn't just something women do!!!
In short, I am more than ok with ageing. In fact, I am loving it and proud to clock up each passing year. Because after all, you are as young now as you will ever be again!!