Graceful aging isn’t as important as grace and kindness

One of the things that really bugs me is when a celebrity is showcased as looking like they’ve never aged. Recently a certain model who is now in her 60s has been in several magazines and television shows sharing her secrets on how she stays looking eternally youthful.
It seems that this is the new paradigm. Images of movie or television stars who seem perennially young and consistently state they have had no work done. They simply have embraced a “healthy lifestyle.” I find it hard to believe that their faces are without wrinkles simply from eating a lot of kale or exercising. If that is the case then I should have skin as taut as a starched sheet. Let’s get real, botox and fillers are more than likely their fountain of youth. If they want us to believe them, then they should take closeups of their inner thighs and upper arms and put them on You Tube. It’s hard to smooth them out without surgery.
I come from an Italian family where the women lived long lives and looked pretty good for their years. My great grandmother lived to be 95, my grandmother was 93 when she passed and my mother was 99. They had great skin, were on the move most of the day and seemed to have all their marbles with the exception of my mother whose cognitive abilities started to fail her in her early 90s. They ate a Mediterranean diet, took walks and used olive oil on their skin. My grandmother washed her hair once a week with brown soap, then applied olive oil to her dry hair for a couple of hours. Olive oil was the elixir for the inside and outside of the body.
How they looked was important to them but it was not their focus. Bonding with family and friends, sharing meals, and living with passion was very important. Oh there was plenty of craziness. Drama was part of daily life, but so was laughter. Community was important. When someone was in need, whether it be a neighbor or a family member everyone lent a helping hand.
The media did not spend hours focused on reporting the latest way to look hot, hip, and young. I actually never heard my mother or grandmother moaning over how thin their lips were getting, or their droopy jawline.I know times change and science is giving us opportunities to enhance our looks if we so choose. However, it’s important to keep perspective. We need to also choose to work on our internal selves. Smile, share good news, savor every moment, be kind and compassionate to yourself and others, and enjoy your life as much as possible. I believe these are the attributes that keep us feeling young and vital! No amount of Botox can take their place.

About lorettalaroche

An international stress management and humor consultant whose wit, and irreverent humor, has, for over 30 years raised the humor potential in all of us. She is on the Mass General advisory council for anxiety and depression and was recently awarded the National Humor Treasure Award. Loretta writes a weekly newspaper column called, ‘Get a Life’.

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2 Responses to Graceful aging isn’t as important as grace and kindness

  1. Rick Barrow says:

    AARP is not helping to promote grace. I used to marvel at their publication’s photography when I subscribed to Modern Maturity as an associate member in the late 1970’s when I was in my 20’s. Now in my late 60’s I can’t stomach the magazine. I characterize it as “People for Old Farts.” Show me everyday folks turning 50, 60, 70 and 80 that contribute to their communities. THAT is grace.

  2. Helen says:

    I agree, Loretta. Besides too much kale can make you arrogant–according to the World Health Organization. Must be true, I read it on the internet. Thank you, shagging my day with a smile and giggle.

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