Friday, August 16, 2013

The Beauty of Aging

Have you seen the new Fall issue of Twist Collective? Have you noticed the wide age range of the models (from very young to elderly)? Go onto Ravelry, and you'll discover that the most popular designs in this issue are those modelled by the person with the most wrinkles. The sweaters and the model are both strikingly attractive and, as a bonus, it's obvious that the model (I'm guessing from her name that she's the photographer's mother) is a fibre person too.
At 56, I'm not yet a card-carrying senior, but I do find myself having to cope more and more with the effects of time--the saggy neck skin (and other body parts), the thickening waist, the occasionally stiff joints. Yet, at the same time, there is an energy that's come with liberation from the reproductive hormones. Along with the hormones, I've lost the crippling migraines that dominated my reproductive years. My kids are mostly grown and, while they still cause a certain amount of anxiety (I suspect all mothers always worry), the years of physical care are done. Bill and I are more secure financially than we ever were when we were younger. It's a very good time of life. I know I'm not the first woman to welcome and enjoy the freedom of the post-menopausal years, and the creative burst that often comes with it. I published my first pattern at age 53, and I'm learning more and becoming more, not less, adventurous. I have more time to reflect, to experiment, and to bring my years of experience to bear on my work (or perhaps I should say "play"). I feel more vitality and excitement about life than I ever felt when I was the exhausted parent of two coping with the challenges of the competitive environment of Washington, DC. So, the notion that once a woman hits menopause, her attractiveness is gone, is repugnant to me. If beauty does indeed come from within, then surely the energy and confidence of the mature woman must be visible--as it is Jane Heller's photos of her mother. Thanks Kate, for this wonderful fifth anniversary issue.  

6 comments:

  1. Those twist collective photos are my favourite! What a beautiful woman, wrinkles, grey hair and all, and she looks great in her knitwear. Though the beginning laugh lines and grey hairs that are popping up on me are not always easy to accept (I'm 43), this does much to make me embrace the changes. I look forward to the type of creativity and freedom you describe.

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  2. Gee, don't you wish more of the media were as liberated? I am dealing with a 15 year old daughter who is 6 feet tall, but not "willow slim". She sees herself as unattractive-because of places like Hollister- whose business line is that they don't make their clothes in bigger sizes because bigger people shouldn't wear their clothes! I applaud those who find beauty in that lovely Twist model. She is a winner. Well done!

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  3. Indeed.My mother always said that her life got better as she got older. We should all live that attitude and respect the process and ourselves.

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  4. nice post here
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  5. What a delightful post! I was thrilled to see the ranges of gorgeous models in the new Twist publication! How refreshing to see the older generation celebrated, too. Looking forward to your Petrova pattern. It's lovely.

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  6. Here, here! I love those photos and I am loving this time of my life.

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