I saw her today. It was at sunset, and she sat in the courtyard of the restaurant I was at, looking radiant and notably happy. She was with a companion; I assumed her husband or maybe even a date. They were both dressed fashionably well, yet casual. I caught her eye, while she was browsing the menu of this popular place. When she looked at me, she smiled, her platinum hair complemented her light tan, and her makeup was impeccable yet minimal. She wore a hip new bracelet on her tan, yet saggy wrist.
That will be me, I hope, in the future. She looked so genuinely content. I smiled at her, and she smiled back. I had a feeling that she knew exactly what I was thinking: I want to be like you, when I am in my sixties. I felt a flash of hope for my future self.
Yet just the day before, I was looking out of my office window at an elderly woman, well maybe not so old but in her early sixties, I gathered. She was limping slightly while walking to her car. Her back was a bit hunched which her lose shirt could not hide. Again I saw myself, in her, a decade or so from now. She did not radiate happiness like the woman at the restaurant; she was not spirited and looked burdened by life. Maybe she was just having a bad day. But I had still thought of myself resembling her in the not so distant future.
I hope that the woman in the parking lot was happy. I hope that I will be, when my body starts to really show my age. Can I be happy still, when all of my life I felt old?
Even in my prime, I always felt ancient. Perhaps I am an old soul because when I turned 20, boy, did I think I was old. Now in my late 40s, I try to be young, at least at heart; younger than the 20-year-old me. Granted I am a heck of a lot smarter than she was; she was insecure and never really knew her beauty back then. I grew to know my own beauty eventually, yet I always thought: Oh my god I am getting up there in age.
I think I truly felt the most beautiful in my early 40s. Why is that? Why is my mind not in sync with my chronological age? I pondered that. But then I remembered a conversation a decade or so ago, when a much older and wiser girlfriend told me that women don’t really know how beautiful they were, until they got much older. So sad really, yet maybe so true.
I think the woman at the restaurant owned her past and present beauty and felt good about it. She exuded happiness, saggy writs and all.
So I promised myself to be content and spirited like her, when the sun is setting in my own life. I hope I will be, and I hope that for all the women in the world like me.