How I’m Shifting my Fear of Aging
It was my birthday at the beginning of the year.
This was the first birthday in 4 years in which I was neither pregnant nor breastfeeding.
Up until last summer, I had been for 4 consecutive years, on a continuous hormonal roller-coaster ride of pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, overlapping second pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding.
I loved every minute of it. Mostly.
But also: my former super hot body is now not as… well…hot. I no longer have that I-slept-10-hours-straight glowing firm skin, and if I get close to one more nursing bra or have my tits leak, I think I’ll have a meltdown.
Basically, I hadn’t had my brain or my body to myself in years.
So, for my birthday, I checked myself, alone, in a luxurious private resort tucked between the Persian Gulf and the desert of Manama. I knew I needed to look in the mirror and face myself. Literally.
So I sat, stared at my face in the mirror and started speaking to myself.
The heavy issue that was pressing on my birthday joy was threefold: “I’m not as young, beautiful and thin as I was in Hollywood. It’s the end of my world”.
I decided to play a game. Rana, I told myself, if you didn’t care about being young, beautiful and thin, what other three attributes would you care to be?
I replaced young with “creative”, beautiful with “free” and thin with “courageous”.
Now Rana, I continued, how about we replace: “Oh no! I’m not as young, beautiful and thin as I used to be” with “Oh look! I’m more creative, free and courageous than ever before!” How would you feel about that?
A tingling sense of bliss and relief overwhelmed my body.
Since, I decided to start focusing and celebrating these new empowering attributes of creativity, freedom and courage rather than focusing and sinking into the despair of loosing a little bit of youth, beauty and slimness (which by the way is inevitable, and that’s ok).
It dawned on me that contrary to youth, beauty and slimness; I never have to loose my creativity, freedom and courage. They are mine to have and keep forever. As a matter of fact, I can expand these attributes and keep pushing their boundaries!
Then and there, I had a birthday breakthrough.
Now don’t get me wrong: that doesn’t mean I don’t care to be beautiful, youthful and slim. I work out with a personal trainer 3 times a week, do Hatha yoga, swim and dance 5 Rhythms. I eat healthy, ingest probiotics daily, get a facial and peel every month and I’ve just booked my first spray-tan session. Some of the greatest joys of my existence come from painting my lips a femme fatale red, seeing my ass shrink and tone and slipping perfectly pedicured toes into a pair of Aquazzura pumps. Also, don’t rule out botox from my future. Taking care of one’s wellness and looks is a substantial part of Self-Love. I just choose not to base my sense of self-worth and fulfillment solely on these characteristics.
Will you play that game with me?
Leave a comment below and let me know what old attributes YOU would like to let go of and replace anew.
Break them down to specific adjectives, three old ones you no longer want – or don’t want to focus on – and replace them with three new ones.
Aging is beyond growing or looking older. Every birthday is the privilege of deciding who you want to be from now on.
The birthday itself is the gift. The gift of Re-Invention.
I cannot wait to hear how you want to reinvent yourself.