You are beautiful even when getting old.
You are beautiful and you can prove it.
OK, I do formally acknowledge that I am never going to lose weight, I just can’t be bothered. As all us middle-aged girls know, you go to a heck of a lot of effort to lose weight, it is very difficult, you are delighted when it falls off …. and in the blink of an eye you have piled it all back on again. So let’s not bother.
I have got to that age where I’d just as soon not look in the mirror. No, no, it’s OK, I’m not fishing for compliments, and I do know that, as far as women of my age go, I look fine. I’ve put on weight, but I am not fat, or even chubby (I hope!) Wrinkles and droopy bits and saggy bits have started to set in, and I’ve got a bit of a tum and two notable love-handles and a few of those dented-looking marks on my thighs ….. but hey, for my age I look fine.
I think the trick is to do what you can with what you’ve got. I’ve got a dear friend who is very over-weight, and she uses that as a kind of excuse for letting herself go. “I must lose a bit of weight first” she says, as though one cannot wear something lovely if one is fat. It sticks a bit in my throat to say it, but my mother-in-law remained a very handsome woman till the age of eighty or more, despite being really very fat. She made the best of what she had got. She’s have needed years and years to lose a note-worthy amount of weight, and she talked about it constantly, but in the meantime she wore striking clothes, striking dress-jewellery (which she always pronounced joolerry), had her hair done and accessorized with bags and shoes or scarves and gloves to match.
That is the trick. It has to be. Fat or thin, nice skin, horrid skin, black or white, old or young – make the best of what you have got.
There was a woman in a queue yesterday – and she is what prompted me in to writing this – who was quite simply hideous. Aged around thirty, her features (I studied her from behind the safety of my sunglasses) were regular, she was only slightly overweight and she wore not the faintest hint of make-up or earrings or anything pretty. Her hair was scraped back in to a nasty little knot, and she looked miserable. A smile on her face, or even just a pleasant expression, would have worked wonders. Why had she scraped her hair back that horrid way ? Did she not own a pair of dangly earrings ? It is amazing what dangly earrings can do for a plain face. Surely she could have cleaned-up her shoes and repaired that tear in her blouse ?
But it is none of my business and mine is not to reason why. Lord only knows what went on behind closed doors in her household, and she perhaps had good reason to look miserable … but somehow I think not. She had just let herself go, probably after a birth.
I asked around a few of my girl-friends, aged 60-ish, who I consider good-looking. In varying degrees of importance these were their golden rules:-
- Clothes clean, ironed, shoes polished
- Earrings, bit of make-up to include lipstick
- Hair washed, grey bits tinted
- Try, even if unsuccessful, to not put on further weight
- No slouching
For myself … well, I don’t know. The above, sure. But I am not going to let it be a downwards slide from here. I am beautiful. I refuse to be anything else. You are beautiful. Lovely. Let’s prove it.
Catherine Broughton is a novelist, a poet and an artist. She is widely travelled and writes regularly for magazines and blog sites. Her sketches are on her web site http://www.turquoisemoon.co.uk . Her books are available from Amazon and on Kindle, or can be ordered from several leading book stores.