Are You Maturing Or Just Growing Old?
The earnest young assistant at the beauty counter sidled up to me, just for good measure emphasising our yawning age differential with a "Madam, may I help you?".
"Both these would be perfect for you, Madam" he continued. "Rose is ideal for you as it's blended for that delicate English skin you have so carefully cared for", very kindly omitting the "for all these years" which was left hanging in the air. "And you have the one made from the finest frankincense, too", as he gently learned towards my body, leaving only the barest wrinkle of light between us. "What a perfect combination for you, the one we always recommend for the mature woman who..." he prattled on as he read the label in my hand.
The realisation that he had just inadvertently opened his mouth and put his foot right in it turned him a rather fetching puce colour, prompting him to drop his pretence at being a grown-up and instead to relish in his youthful (and, let's face it, sexy) skittishness. "Oh I'm so glad you're laughing" he winked at me, "for a minute I thought you might get all upset that I called you old, when, of course, you're not that old" with a heavy emphasis on "that".
"You didn't call me old" I rather pedantically replied with a smile cracking lines on my face. "You said mature, and that is really a big compliment. I always dreamt of being called mature".
So what's the difference between being old and mature? Old is has-been; old is an attitude; old is so past its sell-by-date. Maturity is ripened honour, timelessly enjoyable.
The difference between being old and mature is not how much cream you've slapped on your face, but how much you've learned and expanded through the experience of your life. Why don't you invest in something more long-lasting, such as your own self-respect and confidence rather than be duped by the media industry that beauty is skin deep?
Where and what we learn from matters.
I learn a lot from the other women who have joined Be the Woman You were Born to Be Online Course and Community, especially in our private members area called the Inner Circle. Over the years this has accumulated a vast array of wisdom on all aspects of what it is to be a woman. This is real stuff, from real life, not mumbo-jumbo. With women participating from all walks of life and all around the world we have an extraordinary wealth of perspective, advice, and experience.
In recent weeks the discussions have covered Crying in the Supermarket and that Grief is Not Gratitude; how children challenge us to learn who we are, and what our currency is for feeling appreciated; how a woman handles finances and the whole dilemma of Modern Domesticity and the Home Work Conflict which women face and the impact it has on their families; and how The Goddess Hygeia is a guardian of our health and sanity and a more sanitary approach to public conveniences.
Issues like these affect us all. How we approach them will depend if they age us with maturity or just make us old.