Why Growing Older Needs a Revamp, ASAP

The Lost City was probably more like Sandra Bullock’s real life than even she realized, and why growing older needs a revamp, ASAP.

Last night my husband and I reheated some leftovers, fed the kids pizza in their own rooms, and spent some time together.

I could say that as twenty-one years have gone by, we’ve grown apart, but it would be a lie. The truth is, my husband and I got married young and on a whim, and we never really had anything in common.

I won’t sit here and tell you that doesn’t scare the hell out of me. I worry that when all the kids are grown and gone, our marriage will completely crumble, especially now that we’re getting older.

We used to have an insane attraction to each other, and I felt like that could make things go for years and years, but to be honest, that’s gone.

What’s left now besides a commitment we made at an altar and a family we love?

In today’s world, are those big enough deals to stick it out?

I’m just not sure.

Marriage is hard, growing old is hard, and doing both while also being bombarded by images of “happily” single, gorgeously photoshopped people on the internet is a nightmare.

I’ve been lonely lately, and I haven’t been afraid to be open about that.

What I haven’t been super open about is this: My husband doesn’t really seem to care.

There is a dynamic in our marriage that has occurred since the day we were walked down the aisle.

I gave up all of my past, all of my friends, and everything I loved to be with him and our son. Nothing about my old life fit into my new life, so it was an easy choice to make. I wanted my son to have his mom and dad together, and I never thought twice about that.

But my man gave up nothing. Well, I’m sure in some ways he did, but his life, his friendships, family, activities, they all largely stayed the same.

It’s a part of us that has made me more than a little bitter. I’m frustrated that our marriage hasn’t been more 50/50.

But he does try. Sometimes. Very little. And last night was one of those tries. (It failed, but more about that later.)

See the source image
A Lost City I could get behind (photo credit: Deviant Art)

Last night we streamed The Lost City on Paramount Plus.

I don’t really like criticizing via the internet, but here goes:

It wasn’t my favorite Sandra Bullock movie of all time, but it certainly wasn’t awful.

In fact, had it not been so late, and I hadn’t been so exhausted, I might have made it through.

But the fact that I have to wake up for a job I’m not exactly crazy about made that 8:30 pm start time a little rough.

So I fell asleep about an hour into the movie.

Still, throughout the beginning of the movie, I was struck by how the plot seemingly mirrored Sandra Bullock’s own life.

Now, these are strictly guesses–I don’t know Sandra personally by any means–but track with me here:

  • bestselling novelist/blockbuster movie star
  • struggling to write a decent manuscript/struggling to find a decent movie role
  • dealt with the loss of her husband (death)/ dealt with the loss of a husband (cheating)
  • getting older/getting older
  • ready to throw in the towel/(probably) ready to throw in the towel

I couldn’t help but to notice that Sandra had clearly had some work done on her face.

Nowadays, plastic surgery has become so common with the upper class that it’s easily noticeable. Even the middle class is shooting dead bacteria into their face like it’s a six-month dental cleaning.

Personally, I’d always been a bit judgmental about plastic surgery.

Why in the world would you change the face God gave you? I wondered.

How could you justify spending the money or going under anesthesia for such a shallow endeavor?

Yes, I’d always been snobby about plastic surgery.

Until lately.

Lately, every time I look into the mirror there is a new wrinkle and a freshly sprung gray hair.

After my hysterectomy eight years ago, my belly has obtained 75% of my body fat, but my arms and butt aren’t far behind.

Instead of jumping into action and doing whatever I need to do to stave off this growing old thing, however, I’ve almost completely given up.

Since entering menopause, my life has become nothing more than a bunch of ‘shoulds.’

I sit on the couch and mindlessly eat far more calories than I should.

I recline on my deck and lament to the birds when I should be taking my dog on a walk.

I go to bed with old makeup on my face half the time, instead of washing my face and applying night cream, like I should be doing.

In short, while I know that my life is changing and I probably should be taking action, I’m not.

Part of that is confusion: How many calories should I be eating? What type of exercise will work best? How do I take care of this aging skin?

The answers to those questions are as endless as they are opposite. A person need only to go to two websites to find two completely different information. Two experts have two wildly opposite opinions, and so on.

But the other part of that is plain, old defeat.

Who am I, what am I, now that I am an old, washed-up woman?

When I went to my menopause doctor recently, an AMAZING guy with the personality of a kind therapist, a hilarious comedian, and a drill sergeant, all in one, he said something to me that was nothing short of profound.

I’m paraphrasing here, but it was something along the lines of:

Many women spend the ‘best’ years of their outside lives looking to attract men, settle down and start families. What made them externally beautiful is also what gave them biologically what they wanted. But what happens when they’re older? In most species, the female dies shortly after childbearing years. What happens in a woman’s life when society no longer deems them attractive, valuable or even necessary?

my empathetic/hilarious/disciplined gyno’s paraphrased words

He went onto say that for those of us who society found “attractive” this change can be even more brutal.

And I know why.

Because many women place the value of their own souls on how society views them from a beauty standpoint.

We’ve been taught to do that, us girls, so it’s what we do.

Think about it. When we were younger, the words many of us coveted were, “She’s so pretty,” or “I want what she has,” or “I love her outfit, car, boyfriend, ______________________________”

Our society had beauty contests like Miss America, school contests like homecoming queen, Most Beautiful, prom queen.

We have taught women from the earliest age that their faces and bodies are commodities to be used in their favor.

Then we’ve punished them for using them.

And worse, when their bodies are no longer valuable to us, we’ve disgarded and even judged the women we once admired- the Christie Brinkleys, Paulina Porizkovas, the Stephanie Seymours.

To be fair, we’ve done it to more than a few men, too. Ty Pennington, the former host of TLC trading spaces, has been super vocal of his disdain for the chatter about his changed body.

I posted a video recently of myself dancing on the beach, with my shorts hiked up. What was an honest moment of just trying to make my wife laugh, was then picked apart by strangers- with a lot of views, comes a lot of hate! Comments like “disgusting”, “gross”, “omg he’s so old now”, “grandpa”, “he got fat” (which btw I’m pushing my stomach out but ok). And I wondered, if I was still young and fit, would I be getting the same comments? 🤔 There has been such a force behind accepting all shapes and sizes and aging in the female community which is AWESOME 🙌🏼🙌🏼🙌🏼 (keep it coming) but maybe let’s give that same grace to men? On a daily basis Im inundated with comments like “NOOOo what happened to him???!!!”. Someone even commented the other day, “lack of exercise” which I wish was the truth! I have NEVER worked out harder in my life- 7 days a week (this over 50 sh*t is no joke 😂). “What happened” is, it’s been 22 YEARS since I made my television debut! No, I don’t have a six pack anymore or a luscious head of hair (with frosted tips 🤣) but what I do have is wisdom, empathy, life lessons and at 57 years old, I’ve TRULY never been happier! Anyways, all this to say: I’m human and I have feelings. Yes, I am older but I think it’s pretty cool. And to that, here’s a picture my wife took of me that I really like- I have wrinkles and sunspots and grey hair but that’s okay and as @paulinaporizkov says #sexyhasnoexpirationdate Cheers to getting older! 🤗

Ty Pennington, Instagram (fair use)

While I agree totally with his sentiment and find it horrible that he’s been judged for a changing body–a totally normal everyday, age-old thing that society seems to have forgotten naturally occurs–I will admit that his words are hard to swallow when I know he’s going home to a much younger woman, as is the case with so many like him, such as Ryan Seacrest, Dennis Quaid, and Leonardo Dicaprio.

Most women will never be afforded the same opportunity to have their lives match what their minds feel. We also never really feel older than those “prime” attractive years, but unfortunately for us, we are not seen as beautiful.


To many in society, our gray hair is “old” not “stately,” our wrinkles are “gross” not “weathered,” and our bodies are “disgusting” not “loveable.”

Last night, as I was watching Sandra on the screen, I couldn’t help but notice that she didn’t look like she was giving this role her all.

I’d noticed it when she was on the circuit too, promoting the movie. She just didn’t appear as if she was all in, but to be fair, it could have also been that her face is so tight now, her expressions can’t be read.

From what I’ve seen in the news, she has claimed this will be her last movie role. Now, we know how retirement goes with these folks, but I completely understand her feeling.

Hollywood has a shelf life, especially where romance is concerned, and Sandra is just about tapped out.

Let me be clear that I don’t feel that way. I want to see more women my age, with less plastic surgery, falling in love and living happily ever after.

Just because we’re older, we are no less valuable.

We still have feelings, and we still want adventure.

As we grow old, I think I speak for many women when I say that we don’t want our primary role to be that of “babysitter of grandchildren.”

Not that grandchildren aren’t wonderful, and not that raising children is not one of the most worthy endeavors in the world.

But many of us mature women also want to see the world, have good sex, eat great food, and laugh, love, and live.

We want our I should to be less important and less frequent than our I am.

And we want to be valued by society the same way we are valued by the Universe.

Sandra, should you ever read this, please hear me: we loved you then, and we love you just as much now.

And you are beautiful no matter what Hollywood tells you.

See you soon,


1 thought on “Why Growing Older Needs a Revamp, ASAP

  1. Pingback: Three Ways to Embrace Growing Older – Huqumma

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