No one is going to get out of here alive. At some point or other each and every one of us is going to die. This process has been going on for eons and I don’t think it is going to change anytime soon. It’s the aging process.
Maybe all our conveniences have given us just way too much time to spend being concerned with things that seem to have more value in the present time than ever before. I doubt my great grandmother had the time at the age of fifty to be concerned with the lines on her face. Those lines were expected and honored as time spent on this earth. They were certainly nothing to be ashamed of and try to hide.
The odd thing is my great grandmother never used anything but soap and water on her skin. She didn’t use any special creams or moisturizers. Yet when she died the mortician said her 81-year-old skin was as soft as a baby’s. Gram believed that soap and water with a good dose of common sense was all that was needed. And she proved it by her example.
It wasn’t that she lived a sheltered life of leisure. Gram lived on a farm and she also had a job as a traveling nurse. She did all types of labor in all types of weather, whatever was necessary at the time.
Her common sense approach would have been to wear the right type of clothing for the job. If she were in the garden there would have been a need for a hat and gloves. I seriously doubt that she ever did much sun bathing and of course there were no tanning beds. She died 36 years ago; more than a few years before tanning beds came out big.
I doubt Gram would understand the necessity for working out in a gym or other place for exercise or “body building”. If she was ever concerned about flabby arms or legs we never knew it. Gram probably got enough all-round exercise on the farm to keep her fit. And my guess would be there was a slightly different definition of “fit” back then.
Have the people in this country always been so obsessed by looks? It had to have started somewhere. Was it always a sin to have gray hair? Wasn’t there a time when people with gray hair were respected because it meant they had more life experience?
Wrinkles have become a big money maker now. People will spend a fortune on a “lifting” product that if you use it for 30 days it will take care of 5% of the droop of your eyelids. Come on now, 5%? Is that even worth the bother? But let us not forget if that doesn’t make us look younger then there is always an eye tuck or a quickie face lift done with strings inserted under the skin of your face on your lunch hour or you can go all out with a full face-lift. Oh and there is some sort of laser thing where you can get rid of that nasty outer most layer of skin off your face that you are just going to go out in the sun or into the tanning booth again with and what will the result eventually be? Time to take off another layer of skin? Who are we really doing all this for? Why has it become necessary to go to such measures?
When did growing older become such an embarrassment? Pick up just about any magazine and if you have a sense of humor about this sort of thing, they will all give you your chuckle for the day. If this is serious business to you then you might like the latest suggestions. There are so many cures for all types of the simple aging processes. Guess what. Time wins. You are still going to grow older. Gravity will take over with age.
With all these nips and tucks for all the different parts of the body, keeping it all nipped and tucked could become a full time job. It’ll be like mowing a huge field with a little mower; by the time you get to the other end of the field it will be time to start over. Same with the alterations on your body, you’ll just get the last job done and it will be time to start in all over again. Your body is not going to stop aging.
People are living longer and we have made some wonderful medical advancements. When Gram was alive, her joints were destroyed with arthritis, there were no knee or hip replacements, you just endured what life or genetics gave you. These are improvements of value to the independence of anyone’s life. There are plastic surgeries done today to reconstruct deformities that never would have been believed possible back in Gram’s day. There is no doubt there are some wonderful advancements being made. However at the same time I believe we are giving the younger generations some unrealistic views.
We have teenagers now who want cosmetic surgery because they are unhappy with what they look like. Weren’t we all? They all want to be beauty queens but before our generation that wasn’t much more than a dream. And now so many of the older generation wants to look like teens for the rest of their lives. Quality of life is so wrapped up with looks now, was it always that way and I missed it? Or have all of our conveniences of life today given us just way too much time to be so concerned about such superficial things? Since the beginning of time the elders have taught the next generation by example, what are we teaching the next generations?
When I leave this world, as I know I will one day, I have decided to exit with whatever gravity leaves me with flopping, hanging and dragging. I may do it in some wild colors of clothing, with some just-a-little unconventional attitudes and hopefully with a huge sense of humor. My Gram did leave me with “you have to grow older chronologically but you don’t have to grow up”. I think those are the things I want to pass on to my grandkids, not a desperately unrealistic view of the aging process.