Dress like you are having Fun!!! (Part Two)

IMG_4200Here I am, a woman of a certain age, having fun again. Life is short, I don’t need to remind you, so there is no time for deeley-daly. After all, thinking too much can take the joy out of living. Just go with the flow.

IMG_0657Moving to Miami, more than a decade ago, was not easy. Making new friends, changing my lifestyle, embracing my new home, all came slowly. Needless to say, this gave me time to explore a few ideas. I wrote a book Here, started two blogs, traveled more and let my hair go grey. Most importantly, I enjoyed choosing my clothes once more!!!031_31

281884_10150265571164670_2322063_n                         Getting in touch with my inner style maven was a gradual projection. Remember I had spent a while just pretending I had to adhere to rules. Of course, you would think I should have known better.  I am sure I did, but ignored the feeling for a while. What a faux pas!!!

IMG_2468This is how it went. Slowly, I went from brunette to blonde. As my hair got more and more grey, I lightened it. It was a riot, since it not always turned out the color I wanted…….but, I could have cared less. It was fun!!!

IMG_4023Then, I changed the color palette of my wardrobe. Needed to get the right background for my new look……this was hilarious. Can you imagine? Shopping as a new person to dress yourself as a new person. Have to admit, it was a great experience. Besides, retail therapy can only help with whatever is ailing you!!!11245509_10153410853541802_2516595544563633616_n

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I thought my body had changed enough, but was I ever wrong. My walking routine became a once-in-while effort, there were new restaurants, new cuisines to try…….all this took a toll. I gained weight!!! It was all I could do to keep within my clothes size.

Unfortunately, losing weight and keeping an exercise routine gets harder as we grow older. What to do. It took time and effort, still not back to my ideal weight……I am still somewhere between pleasantly plump and svelte. After all, I am short, five pounds can look like twenty.IMG_4093

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Well, my legs are still holding, I reckoned, so short skirts and cropped pants!!! Hats, chunky jewellery and brooches, high heels and elegant flats, scarves were added for good measure. After all, the point is to have fun….and all of the above can help you with just that. No comfortable clothing…….unless it is also stylish…….my only rule!!!

IMG_1531.JPGWe are individuals, but sometimes we tend to follow the herd.  I figured, that out there we can find kindred spirits that can help us go back to the right path: we are unique and we must not forget that if there are rules, we must not be tied down by them.IMG_1617.JPG

With that in mind, I joined a couple of sites for older women. Besides advise I didn’t always follow, there were conversations with women that were interesting, centered, sure of themselves and fabulous!!!! It was educational.

As we grow older, we tend to over think our choices in everything. We listen to others and forget to listen to ourselves. Somehow we DSC00124convince ourselves that we need to look our age. Whatever that means!!!

-4Not me, not anymore…….I feel better than ever in my skin. I can and do wear things I love and things I find  flattering. Mostly, I wear what makes me  happy and I am having fun!!!

Nora Ephron, I am embracing my neck!!!

41cRDasGDKLIn 2006, Nora Ephron, screenwriter, producer, director, journalist, playwright, author, wrote: I Feel Bad About My Neck: And Other Thoughts on Being a Woman. In the book, Ms. Ephron writes about things women my age know so very well: age, loss and vanity. Her exquisite wit and talent lead the reader on a path to understand what happens to us as we age, as we start to realize that youth is fading away. The first essay is about the neck. If you haven’t read it, please do!!

When I read the book, I completely understood what she meant. I even agreed with her as I laughed out loud at her comparisons and advice. “Our faces are lies and our necks are the truth. You have to cut open a redwood tree to see how old it is, but you wouldn’t if it had a neck”, she once said. Have to say I did not disagree. After all, I have seen older women, I have seen that my neck was not the same. Still, I never considered being so preoccupied with it. I was still adjusting to other changes, my neck was not important yet.

Oh, how wrong can we be!!! Not two years after that, my neck became the center of my aging concerns. No, the worse had happened, my neck was definitely showing signs of wear and I thought everyone was looking at it!! I now know, each one of my friends was worried about her own neck and had no interest in mine. At least the ones that were real friends!! Or the ones who would not worry at all about aging, and we all have a friend like that.

I felt as Ms. Ephron did, I should have paid attention to my neck when I was young. I should have taken care of it more than my face, which could be helped with make-up and creams and other such things. Our necks, I am sorry to say, do not response all too well to those treatments. Short of surgery, there is little you can do to improve its appearance.

Her advise was to start covering your neck at 43. I was older than that when I read her book, so I was a bit late. Still, her ideas were seriously considered: wearing turtlenecks and scarves, Oriental collars à la Joy Luck Club!!! Just hilarious!!! Trust me, I have considered each one of those pieces of wisdom. Have even worn some of them, but these are just ways to ignore what is there in plain sight: our aging neck!!!

I have done facial exercises, have slept without a pillow and have used untold creams and lotions. I decided a long time ago, there would be no cosmetic surgery in my life. A couple of times, I have been tempted. The only thing I can tell you is that my fear of unnecessary pain kept me from those thoughts. I always say that if I have to suffer pain, it must be for something more than looking great: like having my C-Sections. My children were my reward.

Since starting this blog, I have changed many of my preconceived ideas and concerns. After all, once you let your hair go grey, few things frighten you about aging. On that note, I am telling Ms. Ephron: I’m sorry, regardless of what you said, I am embracing my neck. It is not that I suddenly find it attractive or I have found a miracle remedy. Sorry to say, that hasn’t happened. Probably is not in the realm of possibilities. I have not gone against my principles and had surgery either. None of that, I’ve simply decided that what I am doing is all I can do. Life continues, my neck will just have to take second place, or a place further down the line.

Creams and lotions and exercises will still be part of my daily routine. After all, I am now used to them and will missed them if I stop. My pillow will or will not be used at night. This will depend on my mood or my headaches. I am refusing to cover my neck unless it’s with a fabulous necklace or it’s cold and I need a scarf or a turtleneck. Everything that shows, I have earned. For good or for bad, what I did or didn’t do is now irrelevant. Age has its rewards and its detractions. I will consider my neck one of the latter and move on. Feels great!!

P.S. Please get the book and read through it. Your idea of aging will be greatly improved and you’ll laugh non-stop.