Accepting Reality is Hard

Nov 23, 2015 | Turning 60 and Beyond | 0 comments

Kudos go to Special K who is ditching the diet message for a new more positive message: “own it.” It encourages women to shed their doubts and focus on what they can actually change versus getting hung about on the things they can’t.

If you haven’t seen the video take a look.

It starts off saying 97% of women have an “I hate my body moment” every single day. That’s a lot of women hating! As women we have been fighting our body image it seems forever. There is always something that’s not right. Our breasts are either too small or too big, our hips or thighs are too large, and our butt too big or too small, our stomach isn’t flat enough. Why do we do this ourselves? I feel it is in part the fault of the media showing us all the photoshopped images of beautiful women out there.

For those of us sixty and over there are reasons why our bodies look the way they do. Most of us go through menopause (that nasty word) between the ages of 50 and 60. The changes to our body are difficult to adjust to. We can thank our changing hormone levels and the slow down of our metabolism. We lose the elasticity in our skin, have decreased muscle strength and bone density, lose flexibility, weight gain or loss, vision problems, a decrease in memory function, hot flashes and mood swings. All symptoms caused by the decreased production of hormones. Honestly, as if we haven’t had enough to endure through our lives, now we have all this to contend with. The degree to which we suffer from these afflictions depends on the woman and to some degree is hereditary. If the women before you, your mother and/or grandmother suffered, then you most likely will as well.

But we have to adjust to these realities. Because that’s what is—reality. It is out of our control. Some of the adjustments that may help combat all these symptons include eating a well-balanced healthy diet, keeping active, getting regular check-ups from your doctor, drinking alcohol within reason and quitting smoking. For some women, there is Hormone Replacement Therapy. I personally am all for it. The hot flashes and mood swings were too much to handle so I made the decision to take them as long as I can. Some women are able to take them for a number of years and then stop. Others have to take them for the remainder of their lives. I have tried over the years to quit but always go back. My last attempt was only two months before the symptoms came back with a vengeance. I also continue to go to the gym for cardio workouts and strength training; building muscle will ward off osteoporosis, burn calories and make you feel better. My feeling is as long as I am doing these few simple things, then I’m heading in the right direction for to keep my health as I age.

But try to remember there is more to growing older than what our bodies look like. We have gained a certain maturity, wisdom, there are new opportunities to take and memories to make and none of these have to do our body image. And what’s the alternative?

“Aging is out of our control, how we handle it, though, is in your hands.”

– Diane von Furstenberg