I'm starting to really feel the affect of the years gone by and it's crazy because wasn't it just a few days ago that I was a teenager thinking those teenage years would last a lot longer than they actually did?
I'm in my thirties and those lines are creeping in and creeping deep, a white hair has sprouted and the pounds don't drop as easy as they used to and the energy I had ten years ago has disappeared and I'm left wondering where I lost it.
Some days I look in the mirror and feel so much older than the reflection says and other days, I stare back and wonder how so much time has already been spent.
Everywhere I look, I'm reminded that this world I live in prioritizes beauty and youth over everything else. Over wisdom that only years spent living can bring and beauty . . . the true kind of deep beauty. The beauty that can't be bought, applied or worn. The kind of beauty you get from only be worn from years spent living and being loved.
I grieve those years that are already gone . . . never to be had again. I grieve the person I was then and wish I would have appreciated that time more when I was in it rather than now that it is gone. I need to live in the moment but I am human and at times, I just miss the times that became memories.
I look at my children and I grieve how fast the time is speeding by. I want to slow it down.
I flash forward to ten . . . fifteen . . . twenty years from now and I can already feel myself aching for this time that will soon be gone.
I want them to stay sweet and innocent and pure. I want to always have energy to run miles and run after them. I want my skin to stay smooth and my hair to stay the color it is now.
And then I remember a friend who will never grow old.
And I remember two of my babies that I don't get to hold anymore. I think of them and all I'm left with is to wonder who they would have become . . . what they would look like now and at five . . . sixteen . . . twenty-five.
I think of a quote I have seen many times:
Do not regret growing older. It is a privilege denied to many.
I realize that decreased energy and those lines do not deny me anything. They are proof that I have been given a lot and I have had the privilege to live a lot.
I realize the years spent, the children growing, the creeping lines and the color changing hair is all a gift.
I am not promised tomorrow. I am not promised my next breath. I am not promised that my children will out-live me.
The ever ticking of the clock, the ever changing me and my children are a gift I need to embrace now . . . in this moment.
Those glossy magazines, those reality TV shows that claim to reflect real life are all an illusion. You can't compare yourself or your life to an illusion because an illusion doesn't exist. Years gone by, gray hair, those lines that creep and rest around your eyes and mouth are real. They reflect memories, smiles, laughter and years of loving and living.