What Have You Learned?

As young girls, we're told what to expect as we mature into womanhood.

Well, sort of.

My mom wasn't comfortable with any of that. I'm not sure how I found out. Sex-Ed? Probably. Peers? Probably.

At any rate, I was getting information.

Has anyone noticed that no one was there (no Sex-Ed) to tell us about what was going to happen next? By "next", I mean after forty. Or fifty. Or whatever.

We're making decisions about everything from dying our hair to botox (or similar injections) to surgery to hormone replacement therapy to who the hell knows what, and yet... there is no Sex-Ed class to educate us and help us make good decisions.

We don't get much information at all.

For me:

I quit dying my hair several years ago because I was curious about my natural color. Right now I call my gray hair "bling" and am okay with it. That could change.

I've tried botox. Twice. Won't be doing that again. Loosening up the wrinkles on my forehead caused my eyelids to droop. I looked permanently sleepy.

I also tried hormone replacement therapy. The results were less than satisfactory. I didn't get the boost in my skin or my mood or my weight (well, that would be a reduction rather than a boost) that I wanted, but I did begin to have a physical cycle again. WTF?

My attitude is good. My weight, not so much. I can count steps (often between 12,000 and 13,000) and try and eat right. My body doesn't seem to care very much.

It is what it is.

But, I repeat: my attitude is good.

What have you learned? What would you pass on to the next generation of women about aging?

It's all better with friends.

When Less Becomes More

Over the years it's become less about conforming and more about discovering what makes me original.

It's become less about seeking approval from people I respect and more about setting my own goals.

It's become less about the outward appearance of success and more about that inner security with which I'm finally growing comfortable.

It's become less about how I look and more about how I feel.

It's become less about glamorous destinations and more about holding hands with the man I love while we walk through a parking lot.

It's become less about projecting outward confidence and more about understanding those who are in that spot.

I don't need a purple hat or a red hat or even a white hat. I just need some friends who love to laugh and aren't afraid to be silly.

What about you? How have you changed?

It's all better with friends.