My mother is in her sixties. A couple decades ago, I noticed the back of her hand was so soft, I barely registered that I was touching something. It was similar to the cheek of a newborn baby... that soft.
I'm 46. My hands do not have that super-soft condition. My face, however is another thing. It's actually very nice to touch... and yet... I know that it's become that way because the elasticity previously holding it up, firm and taut and smooth is wearing out... like the elastic of the bra that was put through the hot dryer one too many times.
Last week Terri Hatcher was on Oprah. She took pictures and videos of herself with no makeup - fresh from the bathtub. Guess what? Under fluorescent lighting, with no makeup, hair untamed - she looks as scary as the rest of us do!
My daughters are in their 20's. They are pretty, fresh, and lovely. They are still learning that sometimes there is no rational reason why something won't work - and yet it just doesn't. They over-schedule their time and their energy levels. They still lose their keys and their wallets. Their cars get dangerously close to an empty gas tank and they are sure they will still make it "there and back" before they have to get gas. One day I was dangerously close and called one to see how many miles I can go on one "dot" registering on my Honda. The answer was about 30 - 40 miles. (I won't be held responsible for you running out of gas... but if you are 3 miles from the gas station, don't get frantic.)
I fill up at just under the half tank mark. I live 20 miles from the affordable (cough, cough) gas station, and I drive a Jeep - so I don't play around with this stuff. An emergency could arise and I don't want to be getting gas on my way to the really good (no cough, cough for that) hospitals in Pittsburgh, which are a 90 minute drive.
Perhaps I'm not in the majority, but I get caught up in the desire to be ageless. To look 35 at 60 would be OK with me. After all... my husband's eyes aren't going to fall out at 49, and there are entirely too many people not making love in their 50's, 60's and 70's - and while I'm sure there are many reasons for that, it breaks my heart to think of my husband not desiring to experience that with me. I live in fear of losing the woman I was. But, let's face it... much of her exterior has already changed... arms, thighs, butt, elevation of the bust line, that flesh above my knees, the sharpness of my jawline, the place where my eyeshadow is now hidden.
On the other hand, I like the woman I am today more than at any other time in my life. I never lose my keys or run out of gas. I know that time doesn't stretch just because I've scheduled 8 hours of stuff in 4 1/2 hours, which saves me so much misery. I've gotten to know God in a way that is more deep and honest than when I thought he was a genie and answered all my wishes. I see my husband's flaws have a positive side and wouldn't change them, even if I could. I know I can't change anyone but myself, but I also have the wisdom to give advice in a way that other people can actually hear it instead of bashing them over the head with it. I'm not offended when they don't take it.
In truth... I like the way my face feels. It's like those micro-plush blankets in the store that we all have to touch, even if we aren't buying one today. As the internal woman becomes more wise and holds a more distinct shape, it seems God sees fit to wrap that smart cookie in super softness.