By Sunny Brown
Finally! The world has sat up and taken notice of a fifty-year-old woman. It’s all anyone is talking about. After all these years, it’s like society suddenly realized we actually exist. Well, one of us, anyway. It just took her to be dancing on a pole, scantily-clad during half-time of a male dominated professional football game on national television to make it happen. Nothing says “Look at Me!” more than that. And, frankly, I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. I thought I was doing pretty good until I saw her performance.
Jennifer Lopez’s half-time show performance during the Super Bowl has set a new bar for what it means to be a woman in her fifties. She took away all of my excuses for why my husband couldn’t have a pole installed in our bedroom; “I am a woman in my fifties, for God’s sake, no one wants to see that!” And, that is still true, no one does want to see me doing that. Everyone does want to see JLO, though! I’m just glad she came along after I turned fifty.
No longer is being a fifty-year-old woman an excuse for having that stubborn middle-age weight gain, or why you just can’t seem to find the energy to do all those things you used to do. Now everyone will just say to look at Jennifer Lopez, she’s a fifty-year-old woman. Thanks a lot, Jen. Thank God I’m older than her. I’m so glad that I can always default to saying that, even if it is by just five years. I feel like that gives me some sort of excuse for not living up to the expectations that if you are going to stick around into your fifties you might as well make the effort to not look like it.
I think I am going all about it the wrong way. I just recently got my second set of stitches removed since January. I told my husband that the next time I get stitches I want to end up looking ten years younger. I don’t want to look like a Picasso painting or a patch work quilt with a little patch job here, and a stitch together there leaving me with a series of little scars and nothing quite matching. I’m tired of getting put back together again by accident, next time I want it to be because I am having something lifted or tucked.
They say that dermabrasion is great for renewing your skin, but trust me, dermabrasion from the sliding of your face across the concrete is not the way to go for that smoother, younger looking skin we are all dying for. Unfortunately, I will only have this fresh, new, youthful look around one eye, the one that hit the porch, the other eye will apparently continue to look old. On the bright side, my “good side” just got even better, well once the swelling and bruising has gone down.
I just don’t think I have what it takes to age like JLO. So, what does this mean for the rest of us who do not have her talents?
It seems we women over fifty have but few choices as we age: We can continue to fight it and buy every product and submit to every procedure marketed to us to try and turn back the face of the clock of time, or, we can put in the time, effort, energy, discipline, and money that JLO does to actually defy all the years and the pull of gravity.
Given our choices I think I will stick to my firmly established routine. It’s just so much easier to slather on some vanishing cream and become another invisible woman and disappear into the world of women over fifty, than do what it takes to look like JLO. Although, it probably ends up costing just as much money. Either way, there’s just no getting around the fact that, whether you decide to fight it, or give in to it, as a woman, it costs a lot of money, and takes a lot of time, to age. It’s already been a long year.