Dear Inner-Critic… you are a bold faced liar. I’ve proven you wrong time and time again and yet you persist. It’s as if you want me to fail, settle for mediocrity, and live a life that’s just “meh”. Not happening! The crazy thing is, the more you insist upon belittling me and telling me I’m “not ________ enough” the more rooted in my truth I become. I know my worth and I’ve got practice with self-advocacy. I’ve been fighting for myself since I was a kid who wanted nothing more than to live my life as authentically as possible and on my own terms.
Physical signs of aging make me feel like time is of the essence. They remind me that life is not infinite, and so I should avoid spending it on the couch scrolling social media, binging Netflix or simply dreaming about all of the things on my bucket list. I want to be in the present moment and savor whatever makes me come alive. I mean, there’s still so much I want to see, do, and experience in this lifetime.
The aging process also makes me curious and, honestly, a lil’ nervous about how the next few decades will alter my appearance. This quote about aging from Joseph Pilates always cracks me up: “As we mature, we find ourselves living in bodies not always complimentary to our ego”.
At the most superficial level, when I look in the mirror I see the aging process at work. As I gaze at my 51yo self, I see decades worth of reflections flash before me: each era staring back as a reminder of what’s shaped me.
I see… the negative voices from my childhood about my appearance that cultivated my own negative self-talk… being a dark-skinned Black girl in a predominantly White town with a love of Classical ballet where no one looked like me either…