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Friday, June 13, 2008

Remember Yesterday!

For the past couple of months now, I've been a bit obsessed with my seemingly accelerating passage of time toward "40". In a few weeks, I'll be 39. According to my six-year old son, I'm still two years away from 40, since I'm only 38. I like his math.

It's not the first time I've fussed over my age. "30" seemed like a big cross-over. Oh, to be "30" again. My skin was still fairly tight. The cottage cheese blemishes on my belly were barely visible -- of course only one child had been born by then. Those were the days when it was still fun to try on swimsuits. Now I resort to catalog purchases, only from Eddie Bauer who has this amazing technology of fitting not-completely-dumpy swimsuits anyone over the age of 35.

Mom told me a few months ago that "age is just a frame of mind". Easy for her to say -- she looks amazing at the age of 61. "Your mom is so cool." "She looks so young." "I love your Mom's hair!" "Grandma seems younger than you." And the kicker, "Are you Sandy's sister?" Oh sure, age is a frame of mind when you look fifteen years younger than your real age.

Needless to say, I've been practicing "The Secret" (Rhonda Byrnes) by telling myself that I do look young. It's tough when your children say things like, "What's that big line on your face?" "Well, Cole, it's my laugh lines!" "It doesn't look funny." Or when you can't shove that muffin top in those dang low-rider pants anymore. But I continue my quest. "I still look young. I still look young. I still look young. 38 IS young. Right?"

The other day I had lunch with a friend who is also getting close to the age of 40. She is very pretty and youthful. A few topics came up in our conversation that are defining to Generation X -- South Africa (anti-apartheid, Nelson Mandela, etc.), E.T. (yes, the movie), The Gap (yes, the store), etc. And guess what? After our lunch, I felt revived and, well, young! Maybe it was because my friend just plain looks young. Maybe it was because she's full of enthusiasm. Or, maybe it was because we connected! While we have different backgrounds, we lived through the same defining, historic events.

I have other good friends who are also classified as "Gen-X", and of course my husband and I are the same age. Too often we're busy chasing the Boomers' career pace or plugging into Gen Y's communication devices. And of course we're all running our kids to various activities to ensure they'll grow up to be well-rounded. All of those factors simply do not make me feel youthful -- it exhausts me.

So, perhaps the secret to feeling young is taking time to connect with those whom we share similar, generational viewpoints. Of course, my mother has a bazillion Boomers to connect with. We Gen X'ers must learn to seek each other out and "share" in order to keep a youthful frame of mind.

So, let me end another babbling blog with this thought. I took a picture of my ornamental lilac tree a couple of weeks ago. It only blooms for about a week, so during that week, I make sure to relish in the aroma and beauty while it lasts. Then, overnight, the blooms shrivel and dry up. It becomes merely an ornamental tree with dark green leaves.

And it is still lovely.

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