Fifty is the new “Fuck You, Who Cares How Old I am, I’m Fabulous…or at Least Working on it!”

The big day has come and gone, striking like an unpredicted cyclone and sucking me into an era of senior quips, early bird specials and a whole slew of new annual exams and procedures. HAPPY FREAKIN’ BIRTHDAY to me!

My mindset at this particular moment, is neither good nor bad. Just sort of in limbo―and while I’ve had enough time to prepare myself for this, ie: stock up on vitamins, book kegel classes, counteract my hellish hormones with exercise, sex, or dope, I’m just not there. I will be, but at the moment I’ve  got my “don’t fuck with me, I’m in denial” look intact, (reserved for AARP associates) and I may be “accidentally” celebrating the same birthday three years in a row…or ten. (Hey, it worked for my mom who apparently passed for age 33 for a good decade while she was dating after my dad’s passing, so why should the apple fall far from the tree?

Despite all the good I hear about getting older (sex…and more sex), I find I’m still in denial and just not ready―so as I fight fifty kicking and screaming, despite the comforting inspirational quotes, I ask that you give me some slack and let me have my  regurgitation period to rant and rave about my biggest fears. I promise the tirade will be over by the end of the year.

Why the resistance?
I had only a few short years ago, embraced my fabulous forties (thanks to ‘Sex in the City’ and the myriad of articles that followed.) I had started dating online, regrouped, and gotten naked again, all in the spirit of midlife sexuality―and after a seven year hiatus due to single parenting, I was loving it; or maybe it was the multitude of orgasms due to pent-up lust and unexpressed emotions. This unbridled freedom to have a sexual existence again was exhilarating. It awakened my raw sensual side, making me feel as alluring as I had been as a younger woman. I felt hot again…and then BAM!…Countdown to hell.

Just when I was getting used to rockin’ it in my 40’s, (not to be confused with being rocked and impregnated at 41), father time has to go and steal my thunder―or was it his wife, that jealous beeyatch! Yes, I know, age really is just a number and it doesn’t determine your life or how you live it, and yes, I should be proud that I’m living life to the fullest and not letting old stereotypes keep me down. But am I really…living life to its fullest?

I am so much cooler than most lame twenty-five year olds I know. I’m smart, sassy, “funny as shit, off-the-charts sexy, and somehow managing to raise a great kid and still be my own person. Hey, how many of the youngsters can claim those kinds of accomplishments?”

Okay, you can stop rolling your eyes. That last part  sort of morphed itself into a testimonial; And just so you don’t think I’m a complete narcissistic bitch, let’s just say, it’s a summation from more than one credible source…or it could just be a generous birthday compliment taking into consideration my vulnerability, hormones, and a rather erratic mental and egotistical state of mind hours before turning HALF A FUCKING CENTURY!!

Yeah, that must be it. Hey, when you’ve made it this far, you too get to toot that horn, and your friends get to chime along. It’s in their job description.

With aging, you get the good, the bad, and those unexpected bitchslaps that come out of nowhere, even when you’re relatively well adjusted to the fact that you’re no longer 21, and haven’t been for decades. It suddenly becomes apparent that you’re occupying an entirely new category of human being.

“People only get ‘old’ if they get lazy and just let it happen,” my friend Minka told me. “Being young, in and of itself isn’t a good thing. There are plenty of young unhealthy rather boring dumbasses out there who probably have the life expectancy of a new TV pilot.” (she’s a screenwriter…go figure)

There are also a fair share of thirty-somethings that are already “old” and boring.  And me―well, I’m vibrant, healthy and still have plenty of time left to feel old if I choose to…which clearly I don’t, but these annuals, procedures, and potpourri of vitamins I currently take, are constant reminders that my body, for better or worse is the one I’m stuck with; dropped bladder, not quite as perky breasts, and far from the six pack of abs I never had.

Something about a milestone birthday, makes you more self critical than when you’re in between decades―especially when you’re constantly exposed to child prodigies on You Tube, and the likes of the Mark Zuckerbergs of the world…not to mention Ms. Winfrey and all her damn achievements. I had hoped to be out of the country for my fiftieth, having traveled quite a bit in my younger years. Not having crossed the Atlantic in 11 years, I was feeling stale and restless. The travel bug was gnawing at me. Single parenting can do that….or maybe I had simply been sucked into another Julia Roberts film, and been having an Eat, Pray, Love moment. Would that be so bad…or would it just be the equivalent of some balding middle-aged guy speeding around in a red convertible with a twenty-something blonde all sprawled in the front seat? Who the fuck cares! Italy, India & Bali take me away!

Whatever it is that my mind, body and spirit need to transition to becoming half a freakin’ century―whatever my mood, I’m entitled to it. I don’t owe anyone an explanation but I DO need to give myself a good bitchslap now and then and say, ‘Fuck it―I’m gonna be THAT fifty-year old that other women look at and say, “I wanna be like her. She is fucking cool!”

I just may need more time to scramble out of the ‘you’re above the half-century-mark abyss,’ and into that ‘Year of the fucking fabulous Woman…’

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5 Responses to Fifty is the new “Fuck You, Who Cares How Old I am, I’m Fabulous…or at Least Working on it!”

  1. silvermaneman says:

    Even as a man, fifty sucks. When the AARP mailings started coming I just burned them straight away (now I am more socially responsible and simply recycle). I do benefit from a double standard though – while a fifty something man with gray hair and lines in his face can be celebrated as a “silver fox” the pressure on women to continue to look young is intense. The rejection for leading roles of all but a handful of very vibrant actresses past the age of 50 (I can think of Susan Sarandon, Meryl Streep, Diane Keaton…) is frankly disturbing. The studios think nothing of putting up an out of shape 40-50 something man as a candidate for attraction for a 20-30 something beauty (eg, Russell Crowe for Olivia Wilde in “The Next Three Days” – I like Russell Crowe, but, really?) As much as I sometimes wish my hair was more.. brown.. I don’t envy you the social pressures of aging.

    But to get closer to home, Scarlet Blogger, I salute your fire, honesty, fierceness, and hotness.

    • Karen says:

      YOU, the silver fox..bitching about fifty…Really. Look at you! Unless you are retaining water, sleep with an oscillating fan, and have to measure out food because of a metabolism gone awry, don’t even get me started! lol

      The kind of overt discrimination you’re describing is nothing new. Career opportunities have been taken away from women as they age for decades, especially in your neck’a’the woods. The entertainment industry is fickle at best and Hollywood takes the cake—which is why I’d rather shoot myself in the ass than live out there. The last thing a neurotic Jew from NY needs is more neurosis, and LA/Hollywood…the skinny bitch capital of the world, would at the minimum, be good for oodles of therapy, low self-esteem, addictions to drugs or worse…exercise. (okay..I am a bit curious about the botox, but I’m too expressive to turn myself into a blank canvass) Russel Crowe out of shape..haven’t noticed, but I agree..someone of a hotter caliber deserves the likes of Olivia Wilde. He’s had more than his share of hotness..give a younger guy a break. Naysayers? Imbeciles? Men who think 50 is past their prime and only date women whose ideal is so mismatched with the ideal of themselves? Take a look in the mirror chumps? I dare you! And you wonder why women feel a wee bit angry when they receive the message—directly or indirectly, that they’ve crossed the finish line..

      More than your sympathy Daniel, I appreciate the support…and on behalf of all my fabulous fifty and over gender, I accept your salute. I’ll take that fire, fierceness and hotness with age any day. Love your comment and I’ll be after ya for more of your two cents! Hugs!!

  2. Minka says:

    Wow, I feel so honored that you quoted me! And I meant every damn word of it. Sorry it took me awhile to get around to reading this; I knew it was in the making and gestating for quite some time, and I had stopped checking my google reader for new posts for a short period there while I endured the hellish tornado that is the concluding of the school year for my kids, as I volunteered like a speed freak trying to be part of it all. Oh, the drive to be an “involved” parent. Fuck. Exhausting.

    Now they are out of school (already! what the fuck???) and into half-day camp, which means I have a lot less time to enjoy fabulous bloggers and friends, but I knew I had to read this, though we talked about it a bit.

    Y’know, everyone has life shit. And you’re right — bdays definitely bring on that crazy introspection. Makes us think of all the shit we’ve put off thinking about. In a way, I think that’s a good thing. It forces us to pull our heads out of our (young and old) asses and reassess and reevaluate what we’re doing and where we’ve been and where we wanna go next. People who don’t look at their lives more closely usually end up with a shitload of regrets.

    You’re not that bitch! You are empowered and in your own driver’s seat. I love that you are owning your mood and your difficulty facing this time of your life. It’s honest and it’s healthy and it’s the first step toward that bitchslap. It’s way better than pretending it’s all fine and then crashing later.

    Getting older is some scary shit. But it beats the hell out of never getting the opportunity to grow old. As my great grandmother used to say: If you don’t wanna get old, you gotta die young.

    Wise words!

    Just be the best fucking person you can be. Don’t let the number define you. People are staying “younger” longer all the time. I’ve seen 30 yr olds who look like hell. I’ve seen hot babes at 50.

    So go through this mood that you’re in and know that you will come out on the other side doing just fine. I think you’re already almost there. Also, no doubt there are other fabulous people in their fifties and sixties and beyond… Don’t put your preconceptions on them, either. I realize this is all easier said than done, but I think about some of my coolest friends who are over 50, and I never even think of them that way. Every now and then I’m just reminded of their age, but only because they have a bday or something. They totally don’t fit any old stereotypes, and I never think of them in that way. Just like you!

    Instead of being bummed, be proud! This was a great year for you. You’ve launched this site and become quite the online personality. Who knows? This might be your time to be a role model for the “who give a fuck about a number?” set? I can totally see it now.

    PS — love the title of the post by the way! LOL.

    • silvermaneman says:

      Once at a Starbucks when my back was bugging me, I slowly stood up from an overstuffed chair, and this 80ish man looked at me and said “Growin old ain’t for wimps!”

      Somehow the middle of your comment reminded me of that.

      Cheers, Silverman

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