I wish society would recognize women’s wrinkles for what they represent – life experience.
What if we appreciate the beginning of a thirty-year-old’s laugh lines because she is beginning to drop the baggage of her destructive twenties that she hid behind a smooth face which society celebrated? What if we inquire, instead of criticize, about a seventy-year-old’s deep forehead fold? Perhaps it’ll tell the story of an unthinkable hardship overcome or entertain us with tales from recent trips to Cabo with stories unmatched by any eighteen-year-old on spring break. Either story, I’d like to hear.
What if we began to think of a wrinkle as knowledge or as an accomplishment? Perhaps the deeper the crease, the wiser the woman or the bigger her feat. Forgive my exclusion of men here, but society doesn’t shame men’s wrinkles. Society looks at a wrinkled man and applauds his growth as he was once a naïve boy and is now a mature man. We should applaud his journey since no one is excluded from the hard lessons of maturity. But what about a woman’s journey? Society sees a woman with wrinkles as…well, a woman with wrinkles, and she is discarded as simply that. Her journey? Well she was once younger and beautiful, and now she is older and has wrinkles.
I’m in my mid-thirties. Do I use wrinkle cream? Yup, sure do! I’m trying to rid bad decisions I made in my youthful and naïve twenties when I baked in tanning beds…against the better judgement of appropriately wrinkled and wiser women I might add. But the real reason I use wrinkle cream? I don’t want to be discarded as she was once younger and beautiful, and now she is older and has wrinkles. How hurt my older generation sisters must feel. Granted, they’re wise and secure enough to discard the societal discard, but I imagine it still stings.
When I look at my face, I see small creases on my forehead and acknowledge a light-footed crow has waltzed near my eyes – I guess I’ve learned a few things and will learn a lot more. I do have quite a few laugh lines. Those I’m grateful for – how lucky am I to have such a happy life filled with so much laughter? While the amount of time the lines stay on my face after I’m done laughing is mysteriously getting longer (Really?! What’s with that? Oh yeah, knowledge.), I remain grateful to have laughter in my life. With the wrong life lottery ticket, I could have grimly smooth skin around my mouth like too many women do in our uncertain times. So yeah, I’ll keep my laugh lines.
I do, however, have a bona fide deep wrinkle between my eyes and above my left brow. It’s the wrinkle that got me thinking about wrinkles. This wrinkle is deep, not going anywhere fast, and has a story. Maybe someday I’ll share the story, but for now it’s a wrinkle in time that reminds me of hard times I proudly overcame in my difficult and baby-faced twenties.
Now, cellulite? That’s disgusting. KIDDING!!! It’s a dimple (or many dimples), not a death sentence. Get over it!
Smile, ladies, we’re beautiful!