Monday, April 30, 2012

Getting Older is NOT Always Graceful


Dear Helen Hartman,
I am facing a milestone birthday soon. Not saying which one but it rhymes with nifty. Only I am finding it anything but.  More and more I recognize fewer and fewer names of celebrities that are all the rage. The things I find in antique stores are things I grew up with, or sometimes that my kids grew up with.  Love to hear some thoughts on growing older gracefully.

Dear Loved One,
I don’t know what is more unsettling. Asking Helen for advice about being old or that you assume she has some insight into doing ANYTHING gracefully.

HELP! I've fallen... and I can't reach my cocktail.

I remember as a kid hearing the ‘grown-ups’ say they still felt young inside.

Inside what? A very dimly lit stairwell?

Then as an adult when we were faced with planning for the care or final arrangements for our parents, I kept wondering ‘when are the grown-ups going to come and take care of this for us’. Surprise – way before you are actually ready for it, you ARE the grown-up.


You Can't MAKE Me Do It.
(me at 4, same pudgy arms, same bad attitude)


And you LOOK the part. Don’t even get me started about trying to dress a, um, ‘grown up’, body.

So... we're using 'grown up' as code for dimpled and dumpy now? Yes, that's what Helen is telling you. Don't be so smug, I've seen a little grown upness happening to the best of us.

Oddly, as often happens, I took a vintage magazine story to heart from 

Before - I think she's darling, btw.

After:

Um maybe there's something between dressing like Patty Duke or the Duchess of Windsor?


It really is time to acknowledge who we feel like AND celebrate who we have become. 

Weak-eyed and forgetful?  He's my kind of man!

Like way too many things, when something happens to us, we may think we are the first and only to experience it. (Of course, with Helen, that’s true.)

You mean I'm not unique in all the universe? Mr. Mojito says otherwise. 


But, Loved One, as I find time and again in reading vintage resources, we are all going through it, this reinvention of ourselves, this moving from disappointment to discovery to rededication. Take it from someone who knows her way around.


Vintage advertising tray that shows a street we lived on when our kids were little - my anniv gift to Hubby (who collects maps and metal signs)


Feeling and looking older? It’s part of life. So take this vintage piece of advice to carry you through:






No matter what your age, if you are on this side of the dirt, you are on top of the world.


Joining Nifty Thrifty Tuesday at Coastal Charm

36 comments:

  1. Hello Helen:
    Well, no surprise to read that we are with you when it comes to growing up disgracefully!

    With maturity we find that one gets to know all the ways of enjoying oneself that are either forbidden, illegal or just undiscovered by the Youth of the day. And, mercifully, spots tend to no longer be a problem.

    Oh, we cannot count the ways that being of advanced years is a blessing and a joy......but we no longer count the birthdays!

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    1. Wonderful advice - grow old disgracefully and don't count the birthdays! Thanks.

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  2. I've never worried about getting older. First of all, there's not much I can do about it. And second of all, worrying gives you frown lines, so it kinda defeats the purpose, doesn't it? Life at any age is as much fun as we decide to make it. In that respect, why should 64 be any different from 34?

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    1. I knew you'd have a terrific attitude about it. Of course, when you appreciate vintage, you can say we're just getting more collectible (Ignore that, Grim Reaper) um, more valuable every day.

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  3. Yes...there are days I really feel vintage ~ lol!! Karrie celebrates a birthday this week....I'll make her a "this is the life" button....or maybe a "I'm on top of the world" button ~lol!

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    1. Perfect. I have to advantage of having an older sister so I am forever the baby.

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  4. I'm getting close to 30 and I still don't feel like a "grown up." I'm glad I'm not the only one.

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    1. LOL - there are some people who are born 30, it seems and others who never quite get the hang of being an adult!

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  5. Bravo - and I AM on top of the world, and thankful for it! In my dreams, I am still 20...that's plenty! Have a FABULOUS week, Helen...Tanya

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    1. Good for you! I forget I'm not in my 20s, until I bend down to pick something up and can't straighten again.

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  6. Some days I am not sure I am on this side of the dirt. I went to the drugstore the other day to take my blood pressure and it read 103/34 and my pulse was zero. I immediately came home and asked why no one told me I was dead and why they let me drive around while dead. They just gave me the look :)

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    1. LOL - DWD - Driving While Dead. I hope the machine was out of order - if your bp is too low you need to see to it.

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  7. I'm with the first pic... as long as I can reach my cocktail life is good, at any age:@)

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    1. So true. That's when you really appreciate having kids. They can usually reach what I can't!

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  8. Amen being on the right side of the dirt is what it really is all about. This woman who's age rhymes with nifty is sick to death of the bucket list. I will take life as it comes no list for me. I have spent most of my life with a list of places to be at a certain time for the growing kids. With grocery lists of foods everyone likes, and lists of chores that need to be done. Give me a nice martini, let me put my feet up and enjoy being on this side of the dirt.
    ahhh that felt good.
    Cathy

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    1. Amen, Cathy! I have been mulling over that bucket list trend myself. Maybe if it's a bucket of beer... but otherwise let's just live!

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  9. If you are old and you can take a nap without you mouth falling open, you are GRACEFUL!!
    Hugs, Ginger

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    1. Indeed! Does snoring cost you grace points?

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  10. Not to worry...for the first 3-4 years, you can be in your "early 50's", then in the next 4-7ish years, you can be in your mid 50's and then you won't care! At least, that's what I think. wink*wink*

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    Replies
    1. Or you can just be 'middle aged". Lots of people live to be over 100 these days!

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  11. Happy Happy Birthday to you! Trust me..the 50's are good, I've been here for quite a while:-) Funny, funny post. I like your last sentence about being on the right side of dirt.

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  12. I had one of those milestone birthdays last summer, wasn't particularly excited about it. At all. But, as you said, if you are on this side of the dirt...It IS a good thing. Lots left to accomplish in this life, isn't there? I remember a friend telling me that she could never die - her to-do list was too long. :) Thanks for making me smile this morning!

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    1. LOL - so its the TO DO List that keeps us going, not the Bucket List? Good to know.

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  13. Mr OP will rhyme with nifty in 18days and it seems a little hard on him. Me? I'm younger than him and always will be so I'm fine with him turning 50:)

    xo
    Leann

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    1. LOL - yes, it's good to be the younger one. Hubby is always trying to say 'at our age' and I remind him we're not the same age and I refuse to be lumped in with his age-d agenda.

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  14. My Gosh you were a cute little munchkin!
    Also you look so fabulous in your black and white hat with that green dress.

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    1. Thanks! I was a nerd in training but I didn't know I wasn't supposed to be happy. So...

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  15. As always, words to live by. Today it seems that the only important thing is what you look like or what you have. Why have we forgotten that none of that really matters, we don't need to put so much pressure on ourselves... it is what we are/how we project love & who we have become that should be celebrated. Sigh. You were a darling 4 year old... can see some spit & vinegar shinning through there. :-)

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    1. Thanks Danielle! Good reminder about what is important.

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  16. Bloody love that last bit about on top of the dirt. I think I need to write that somewhere so I can remember it (across my foreheads perhaps)? I love getting older and relaxing about my attitude to my looks, even though my body is a bit more worn it's like my dressing gown- the older and gnarlier is gets the more I feel comfortable in it!Rx

    http://sandersonsmithstory.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. LOL. Seems my 'dressing gown' of a body needs ironing! But I love the thought. If only I could do something about my neck.

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  17. Yeah, as my 80+ year old mom would say, "Getting older is not for wimps."

    thriftshopcommando.blogspot.com

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    1. So true. We did a photo shoot for the next blog and had to crawl into bed and recover from seeing myself!

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  18. happy birthday! and by the way...life doesn't really begin till your 50!

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    1. Being to WHAT? LOL I hope that's so for the sake of everyone growing older.

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