A Woman of a Certain Age

A Woman of a Certain Age

Some where along the line, I became a “Woman of a Certain Age.” That is, the age at which it becomes unnecessary, and possibly impolite to query further.

It’s the age where looking in the mirror always comes as a shock because the face I see there is NOT the one I see in my imagination/memory. She lies somewhere in between the two pictures.

I’m at the age when I need glasses to apply makeup, (not that I’ve worn much lately), sunscreen’s more important these days. And I’ll need to seek advice on the newest and best techniques…

Aging Gracefully

It sounds like it’s to do with poise, and I suppose it is. Getting the headology right.

Aging gracefully can be a struggle. As a woman of “a certain age”, I learned to value myself by my appearance. But when you get past that, people stop looking, and you become invisible.

Western cultures compound the effect of invisibility; they have no use for old women who aren’t celebrities or beautiful. In any case, they’re usually played by younger women.

Being called Signora while I was in Italy helped a great deal. Even though I know it’s just Mrs in a different language. It just felt more dignified.

Perhaps it’s because so many Italian widows adopt black clothes; accorded the respect and deference to their grief. Perhaps that’s why those of us who have not lost our husbands wear black too.

Though witches wear black too. Like Granny Weatherwax.

Mind the Gap

Maybe there’s a gap between “a certain age” and elderly, where desireability wanes and respect acrues, and I’m just not elderly yet.

Though I suppose it’s not that bad; I’ve only been mistaken for my husband’s mother once.

But there is a place where the needs of your skin change and you need to reconsider its care.

Where you need to start exercising more to keep your joins supple and muscles strong.

To manage your diet, drink more water, get even more sleep.

Start seeing doctors and dentists to get in front of all the conditions that plague the elderly. Though I suppose I’ve already had my first stroke…

Just Get on With it

Whether you’re a certain age or not, barring catastrophic accidents, you will get here.

Don’t wait until you get here to start making changes.

Wear sunscreen, take care of your body, and ,pre importantly, your brain.


Photos of me in my youth and at a Certain Age. Photos by Andrew hopkins

I’m at the age where digital photography has improved so much my phone takes better pictures than my state of the art at the time digital camera. I think off hand it took 3½” floppies which probably dates me too much…

And just in case you wondered whether I was having a seizure in the picture on the left, that is/was my sarcastic smile.

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