In her amazing book, Fear of Fifty, Erica Jong writes:
You can never really “fix” mortality and death even if you can snip back your chin flab and eye bags. You may look good in a glossy, but in life, there are still scars.
This is one of the most honest books about being fifty and female you will ever read. And, if you’ve ever read Fear of Flying, you know that Erica Jong has no problem with honesty.
While I hope to remain loyal to my no surgery commitment, I don’t judge women who do it. Except that you’re making the rest of us look like crap. So now and then I struggle with “to lift or not to lift.”
I’m making a list of the pros and cons of staying au natural. Here are my first three reasons for avoiding surgery:
1. Easy reading at night. Lie on your back, and all visual obstacles slide conveniently out of the way, resting under your arms so you can find them later.
2. Pants become looser through the hips. Why? Because our asses are sliding down the backs of our legs. But it also means a looser fit through the seat.
3. No lipstick clumping. Just when you’re concerned that your lipstick might be too thick, it slips into those pretty little wrinkles around your lips, thinning to the perfect density.
Like Erica, I struggled through my first year of fifty as I realized some of my exterior was beginning to chip away. However, in my fifty-first year, I’ve decided to free myself of the need to look young. I’m just not willing to put in the time to make sure every part of me looks as falsely young as the rest.
I’ve taken on the mantra of Thoreau:
Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes.
This is our time to shine more from the inside, and rely less on the outside. For me, I am going to be less afraid of the changes on my face and more excited about the changes in my soul. I might get a new coat of paint occasionally, but no plastic siding.
I’m going to furnish the inside, by clamoring after a few of my dreams. Join me, won’t you?
P.S. If you’re interested, here’s the Kindle version of Fear of Fifty: