I became aware of my age, or better said, my mortality, when Joel- my boyfriend from the 1970’s died. In my mind, the two of us would forever remain nineteen. His death left me depressed and grieving beyond what seemed appropriate, given our brief relationship over thirty-five years earlier. It’s been more than three years since Joel’s death- still the sad and untimely news of his passing at only fifty-three years old remains a shock and a great loss. I’ve come to appreciate that in grieving Joel, I am also grieving my own youth. The rhetorical question, where have the years gone, takes on new meaning for me.
The fear of aging is really the fear of being irrelevant or worse yet, dead. Even after all of the remnants of the years—failing eyesight, grey hair and saggy skin are lifted and tummy-tucked away, the fear of no longer being relevant remains. We come to understand as I did through the jolt of Joel’s passing, that we are entering the last trimester of our lives. And even though we tend to focus on the external changes, it’s what’s happening inside of our heads that frighten us most—the thoughts and feelings that we’re working hard to avoid. Rather than looking inward for grace and enlightenment, we focus on superficial changes through procedures that are no more than diversions- like facelifts and fillers. The truth is, until our fears are reconciled on a spiritual level, we will never come to terms with aging. Never mind aging gracefully.
If you read my book, The French Twist, Twelve Secrets of Decadent Dining and Natural Weight Management, some of this philosophy may […]