Being a 40 ish women is hard. Well I find it hard I can’t speak for all 40 ish women. I feel in constant competition in every aspect of my life. Especially when it comes to body image and ageing.
I find that I’m always comparing myself to girls who are half my age. I come up short… Very short and I’m not talking about my stature! I do it that often I forget that I’m twice the age of the girls I compare myself to. That I have raised one child to be a self supporting adult and another who is almost half way there, and I have never burnt my house down or been arrested (achievement).
I look at the twirty (twenty to thirty) something’s bodies and wonder where it all went wrong. Ok, so I could work out more (or at all) and I could eat less pizza and I should definitely lay off the pies but I’ve been there before and I did that already and you know what? I still compared myself. I still felt lacking. I was just a thinner, hungrier version of myself with less back fat, firmer thighs but with serious pie withdrawal. I love pies….
I know it’s my own insecurities but I don’t think I’m alone in that. I think there are many more women like me. I feel like I have to be constantly on my game, running a marathon but somehow I always cross the finish line in second place. The silver goes to meeeee! I mean sure, I can cook pretty well and after a few glasses of wine I can be quite witty but my once firm butt n boobs are no longer pert, my hair is greying. I have chubby bits, crinkles and wrinkles and don’t get me started on my level of grumpy and my tolerance for bullshit. I’ve potentially lived half my life already if that realisation doesn’t make you grumpy I don’t know what will. Wtf!
I try to see myself through other people’s eyes and sometimes it’s hard to see what they see. When I look around and see so much more on offer. I primp and preen and botox and dye. Hide the grey hairs, wear the fat pants, use the creams and potions. There is no magic fix, no fairy godmother. I’m still a 41 year old women who barely has her crap together. I’m never going to look like that hot 20 year old again. I’m not going to look like Elle, Jennifer or any of those fabulous sexy 40 plus goddesses! (I didn’t even look like them at 20 so there is no fucking chance now).
It’s finally time. I have to admit it. Own it even. I’m never going to be 20 or even 30 again! My twirty’s are long gone!
No matter what I do I cannot change it. The clock can not re rewound. For the most part I’ll be honest I don’t want to. I wouldn’t mind looking that age but not being that age. I’m changing my mindset. I mean who really wants to be in a nightclub listening to shit music surrounded by mini adults who are your kids age, trying to suck your gut in and hide your ham arms, whilst downing shots you know you’ll regret drinking for the rest of the week?
I think as a women I need to stop comparing, stop trying to be what I’m not. Stop trying to emulate the 20 something’s and be happy with me. Embrace my increased years. This doesn’t mean I’m giving up or that I should let my myself go it just means that I should be kinder to myself. I should be more forgiving of myself. Learn to love my body that has borne two little people and has the scars to prove it. Learn to accept the lines that are the results of laughter and sadness. Emotions that have made me who I am today for better or worse. Accept that my tolerance for bullshit is now reduced because I’ve dealt with so much of it over the years that I refuse to now. I’ve no time or patience for it. I’ve earned that right!
So what if I can’t compete with the twirty something’s I shouldn’t have to. It’s hard enough being a women without carrying those insecurities around. Let them have their moment whilst I have mine. I like my fluffy socks and pj’s. Getting the wood burner going and cooking for my friends and family. Cosy nights in with Mister Carr watching films and lazy Sundays. I even like radio 2 (I said it!). I like good quality food, good quality wines and good quality company, preferably without having to leave my own home.
I have worked hard to get here. Shed blood sweat and tears. It’s time to enjoy the fruits of this without worrying that I’m not good enough. It’s time to stop comparing and starting loving the person I am! I think she’s pretty extraordinary!