What is it about ageing that scares us?…. and I confine this thread only to the superficial.
I chanced upon this snippet from “Britain’s Got Talent” judge Amanda Holden on using Botox, in “Go ahead and quote me” in the Straits Times Life! section today: “It’s like cleaning teeth – maintenance… I don’t see the point of growing old gracefully.” I think that pretty much sums up this generation’s preoccupation with looking young in perpetuity.
If you are one of the few with good genes and don’t look your age, then good on ya! But I think it’s scary trying to unnaturally preserve the look of a 20-something as you climb in years and move further and further away from it. It’s like desperately clinging to a relationship where one has turned his/her back on the other.
I back tracked as I channel surfed one day, for a programme with a Priscilla Presley and Lisa Marie Presley interview. Not for the contents for sure but the freakishness of a 30-something daughter who looks her age sitting next to her 50-something mother who had botoxed her way to 20-something. Or other actresses desperately clinging to their youth – I don’t know their names – but they all look like zombies. It’s really scary. Nothing else moves except the lower lip. Nary a twitch of any other facial muscle. Then move your eyes down to the neck, cleavage, wrinkly-veined hands and any other thing they deem to display and the ageing skin belies the die-hard face of “young adult”. The wattles kill you too.
Having said that, I looked into the mirror this morning and got shocked by my own reflection! 😮 Let’s just say I am closer to Priscilla Presly in age than her daughter and have not done any botox nor do I intend to; but the rashes around the eyes from allergies, sunburnt and dry skin and tacky, hay-coloured peroxide-laden, not sun-kissed hair (another recent mistake) and short fringe (the other mistake) were not helping much today. I so totally understand the effects of ageing.
Superficially, it’s no fun. But that’s not what ageing is about. Youth is to bright, good looks just as age is to wisdom and hopefully discernment, borne of experience. I do believe there is a time and place for everything. Don’t compete for something we are not equipped for. The beauty industry and media touting be damned. They are only about enriching somebody’s coffers. So don’t buy into that. Feel good in your own skin, at any given time. Whether it’s tightly wrapped around you or hanging loose. 😀
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying abandon yourselves and let loose. We still need to take care of ourselves to ensure we are presentable and not sloppy and indulgent. But it is also to ensure that the beauty from within, the beauty of age that comes with quiet wisdom is not abandoned for the lack of good judgement. It doesn’t look good on Priscilla Presley and the likes of her and it sure won’t look good on any of us.
I dunno… I beg to differ with Amanda Holden. I think there is everything to be said about “growing old gracefully”. Just look at Katherine Hepburn, Paul Newman, Mother Theresa………