Friday, September 8, 2017

50 for 50, day two: Some thoughts on 30-60

This is the second of 50 blog posts counting down to my 50th birthday. You can find the start here.

When I turned 30 (oh, those many years ago) my mother told me that a woman is at her most beautiful and powerful from ages 30 to 50. Early in my 30s I extended that to 60, since people age differently now and dammit, I didn't want only 20 years of my prime. Additionally I know many powerful, beautiful, amazing women who are well over 60, so maybe I should extend it to 70.

As I near 50, I have to say both my mother and I were on the right track about age, power and beauty, but neither of us was thorough in our assessment. We didn't go far enough. It's about more than beauty and power. It's assurance, determination, and self-confidence. It's about turning into my own version of Wonder Woman regardless of my age.

My 20s were largely about figuring out who I was. That decade was full of more angst and drama than I'm comfortable admitting though from conversations with other women, I'm not alone.

In my 30s I began to get a real sense of who I am and where I want to be going, while my 40s have seen me pursue my dreams with a fierce dedication. I couldn't have done this in my 20s. I wasn't strong enough nor was I focused enough. I cared too much about what other people thought. Now? of course I still care. Sometimes. But my own assessments (with input by those I trust and respect most) of my worth and ability matter more.

My 40s have also honed me in some pretty substantial ways. I know I am strong. I know I am resilient. I know I have internal and external worth. I own myself in ways I never thought I could. Confidence, self-assurance and self-knowledge make me feel a heck of a lot more attractive than I ever thought I was in my 20s or 30s. While it's true that I still don't really feel grown up, I do feel more capable, able and determined than I expected when I was younger.

So yes, a woman is beautiful and powerful from 30-60, but we are more than beauty and power, and I hesitate to say when anyone might peak. We are growing into ourselves, or at least I am; it is an ongoing process. I am becoming, more and more. And who knows what might happen at 70? Or 80? I may find that is when life really begins to feel coherent.

This is what 50 looks like. Standing with her hands on her hips, facing the world.

(P.S. None of this is to exclude men, but I can't speak clearly to male growth and discovery. I'd be curious to know when anyone reading this, male/female/other, feels as though they really came into themselves. I am still becoming, how about you?)

(c)2017 Laura S. Packer Creative Commons License

1 comment:

  1. I know for me in my 40's I started to pay more attention to my needs and lost patience for things that brought me down. Looking forward to see what 50 brings


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