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Day 104: Skin Deep

“Taking joy in living is a woman’s best cosmetic.” ~Rosalind Russell

I love the day that I get my hair done. I have long been a fan of hair color; ever since mine started turning grey while my youngest daughter was still in preschool. I still am not sure how old I will be when I give up this trick on nature and bear witness to how grey I am. Everyone assures me it is still too soon. Besides that, I love the eggplant hue that sneaks up on purple, but is still dignified enough to not be a brazen aging woman. My purplish hue is my trademark, just ask any of the middle school boys I know.

Yet even with my younger hair, my face shows my age increasingly. I am learning to make peace with the years pulling my skin down off of my high cheek bones. I never thought I would be grateful for my overly projected chin, but it keeps the jowls from being too obvious now. My neck is starting to be more wrinkles than neck; sad because it was a fine long neck for a while. I miss my young face sometimes when I look in the mirror. I can still see glimpses of it; when I am well rested and feeling well loved.

This is the secret to aging and beauty I think: rest and love. It occurs to me now as I am getting close to my 5th decade that you only get youth for half your life. We move through multiple lives and during the journey our face transforms. I am watching as the young woman’s face I have known for thirty-some years transforms into the older woman I am becoming. The strangest part of these transformations is that for most of us we don’t feel the change inside of us. I feel wiser, but not older. At the end of the days, that feel longer and longer when I catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror, and wonder who is that old woman?

Tolstoy once wrote “It is amazing how complete is the delusion that beauty is goodness.”

I know that I fall under this spell, it clearly keeps me indulging in eggplant colored hair. But, I also know the beauty that shines out of someone’s eyes, that lights their face is ageless. I aspire to peacefully bear witness as my beauty moves inward to my heart. The second half of life, when age moves us beyond the physical attributes that we believed defined us, we get the chance to explore the beauty that is in us.

Doing things that make me feel beautiful whether it is meditation or a new fresh hair-do all count on the positivity quest.