Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Fear of Aging = Fear of Change?

Nichelle Nichols

Something I've been working on in my life is to graciously accept the changes life throws at me instead of bitching, moaning and fighting against them, wearing myself out by swinging out windmills. When I'm able to accept something, the emotional toll it takes on me is much lighter and I have more creative energy to think of how to deal with the change.

So this was playing somewhere in the background of my head when I was taking a dump (great story, right?) and suddenly noticed a thicker-than-usual (for me), lightening-strike-looking stretch mark across my hip I'd never seen before. I played with it a little, wondering if the yoga's really changing me dramatically enough to do that and then being slightly saddened that I had yet another stretch mark. But then I remember that I don't really mind my stretch marks at all, so what was my problem really with? The only answer I could think of was: change.

Suddenly our culture's obsession with youth seemed the simplest thing to deconstruct. What if the entire fear of aging is simply an expression of fear of change? And then, once I started thinking about it that way, it seemed like there wasn't any other rational way of looking at it. Especially since all of the older people I have heard talk about aging not bothering them were people who really rolled with the punches life threw at them.

What do you think?

Related posts:
Thoughts on Learning by Experience
How Our Fantasies Help Us
Would We Like You When You're Angry?

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Xavier Onassis said...

There is only 1 known alternative to aging and that's being dead.

So to fear it, dread it, or complain about it is irrational.

Getting older means you are still alive. And that, for the most part, is generally a good thing.

Stacey K said...

Getting older happens. I have better things to waste my $$ on than all the creams and lotions that promise to make me look younger.

People fear change and that's part of the aging fear. I also think that society puts too much value on the young. That leads to fear of losing one's value in society.

I don't mind being 42. I'm a lot more interesting than when I was 22.

Joe Pontillo said...

Fear of change may be part of the resistance to aging, but I think there are a lot of other elements at play. Honestly, I think it all boils down to how much people want to fuck. Youth and beauty are associated with virility... and with options. The hotter you are, the wider range of people interested in fucking you. We think of it as being all fun and games, but that's just nature's way of trying to trick us into procreating.