It seems like every time I look at my social media accounts, I find lots of posts from lifestyle, fashion, DIY, beauty and especially mommy bloggers. There are so few of these posts that as a woman over fifty I can relate to.
If I do a hashtag search on Twitter for #over40, #over50, #over60, #midlife, etc, I get results for makeup tips, dating sites, and “athleisure” clothing. This seems to be what women in midlife are supposed to be looking for, according to society and the media.
I quite often get the feeling that society looks on women over 50 as invisible or irrelevant. Brands are aiming their advertising at the 19-30 age group, assuming they have the discretionary income to be the best demographic. TV and movies are depicting older women as either cute, slightly batty, or helplessly needing to be looked after. But the fact is we are living much longer and more active lives, and society had better catch up with us.
Think about it – when I get together with my friends, we’re not talking about makeup or the newest dating tips. We’re more likely to be talking about how our lives are going, changes in the lives of our grown-and-gone (or boomeranged back!) children, starting a new career and/or concern about retirement finances, how to take care of ourselves physically and emotionally, and looking to the future.
The idea that turning 50, 55, 60, or any other age should affect how you perceive yourself is arbitrary at best, and largely influenced by ideas about aging that were prevalent long ago. Things have changed.
Do you feel different the day after your birthday? I clearly remember waking up the day after my fifth birthday, thinking that now I’d be more grown up. I was SO disappointed to realize that all the outward things I was looking forward to at 6 – starting school, starting to get my “grown-up” teeth – didn’t change how I felt inside. I was still the same Me as the day before.
And really, we’re in transition all of our lives – from childhood to youth to adulthood to now! And at this stage of life, we can decide to make new choices and even take more risks, because we no longer have the commitments and responsibilities of our younger lives. That’s the exciting part of this new stage in our lives.
So don’t let a number dictate to you how you should be feeling and acting.
In societies which value and honour older people, those older people live longer, happier, and more engaged lives. They are looked up to by the younger generations for their knowledge and experience, and are happy to share their wisdom. They don’t disappear into the background, they are appreciated and respected.
As women in our “Second Act” in our society, we are a growing demographic, and more and more of us are using blogging as a means to express ourselves, to be noticed, to share opinion and experiences, and even sometimes to create an income. We are writing with knowledge, experience, and understanding of what it’s like to be an older woman in a society that is still largely ageist.
I decided that I would revive this blog and see what I can offer to the conversation, being myself an older woman in the world today. I want to examine the joys and challenges of living in my own “Second Act” in our society and hopefully show that age is no barrier to living a full and happy life!
I believe that our viewpoint affects how we see the world and that if you tell yourself that your best days are behind you, you’ll probably be right. So instead, be open to new choices and experiences, and move positively forward!
I hope you will read and comment on my posts – whether or not you agree! I often find that someone who doesn’t agree with me can open my eyes to a fresh new viewpoint and that is important in keeping the conversation moving forward.