Friday, February 19, 2010

Age and Aging, are they the same?

One of the most common concerns in anybody's life is "Age and Aging", and though age is one thing and aging is another, their direction is very similar.

Age is not just a number, it's a representation of your life experience and what you've done with the years you have on you. When I was 20, I certainly loved being that young, but I look back and I tell myself "My God, did I really do that! did I really say this!". My energy was different, but so was my experience and my knowledge. And the world, the world looked fantastic, promising, full of hopes and also full of directions. The potential to a happy successful future was beyond imagination, yes, the sky was the limit.

Turning 30 was not exactly easy, saying goodbye to my 20s? oh boy, that was hard, but I look back and I wonder why was I shocked, why did I tell everyone that I went to bed at age 24 and woke up suddenly at 30? I certainly didn't waste those 6 years, or did I? I'd like to believe that I have learned so much and that my behavior became more rational and more balanced. Then comes 35 and 36 and like most of us, I don't think a day goes by without acknowledging how old I am. I still remember when I was managing a bank, one of my employees asked for some help with his "middle aged customer" as he put it, to my surprise when I met the customer, she was 35 years old, I was 32 back then. I couldn't help but think that night of what is "middle aged"? is there such a thing or is it a term we use to say that in 32 or 35 more years I will die so now I'm middle aged….?

I certainly don't like those labels. If only live 40 years, does that mean at age 20 I was a middle aged man? One of my friends told me something I really liked, she said to me when I was sharing with her how my 20s went by so quickly that I should be celebrating my 30s because I'm in my prime, I liked that. I started celebrating my prime, and I don't think I want to quit that celebration at any age. Each age has its prime, but one thing that's worth the prime celebration at any age is again the knowledge we get with every year, month, day, minute and second we live, with every breath we breathe. It's not optional, we learn and we observe, and the more we learn about ourselves the better off we are. That is age for me. Realistically there are things you can't do after a certain age, for example, I will not be pursuing becoming a gymnastic at age 50 or 60, but I already planned on living a healthy long life by the choices I make. Yes a car can crash me in seconds but that's not what I think of when I make my choices today to have a healthy future tomorrow.

Talking about health, here comes "Aging" and the mask we wear behind the word "healthier". I have seen so many men and women doing plastic surgeries, but plastic surgeries can be categorized differently. Some of them can be severe and some of them can be as simple as fixing your teeth or having a nose job (the oldest plastic surgery). So what makes the simple ones okay and have the world frown on the rest, like injecting botox and having face lifts and so on? I don't know how to answer this question, I can point out the difference between having braces or a nose job which is a in most cases a one time procedure, and having facelifts which people start and don't know when and where or how to stop. Could the motivation be the key factor whether it is to look better or to look younger? and is looking better same as looking younger?

Age is a concern that is overrated, but it is what we made it today. Living in LA for 10 years had certainly taught me how important young age is and how important slow aging is. After all LA has Hollywood and Hollywood is obsessed with youth and beauty. But I turned my back on that because it's a losing game. We are all growing older, and with every year we age, we drag everyone we know with us. Aging is different, we're not all blessed with the same good genes that some of us have. So the reaction is more surgeries to look temporarily better. For me, losing my dad to cancer had taught me that regardless of the look, it's the heath that matters the most, so I plan on living a long healthy life and I do what I can and what I know to make that possible. I throw that out in the world and wish for the best. I feel young and I feel good and I want to feel the same in 10, 20, 30 and 40 years from now.