Deep thoughts, cute shoes

Bad-ass on the inside

So I’ve been thinking about the phrase “growing old gracefully” lately. And I’ve decided it’s a crock.

I have no desire to grow old gracefully. The people I love and admire most are the ones who are kicking ASS while they’re growing old…joining roller derby teams at 40, teaching themselves to become mosaic artists at 50, moving to another country when they’re 70, skydiving at 80. What separates them from the people who get stuck in a rut and come home to the same TV shows night after night? It has to be a willingness to get out of your comfort zone. To embrace change. To look goofy. To BE goofy.

That’s where I think the magic happens–outside of your comfort zone. So as I head towards 50, even as MS makes my body weaker and more frail, I’ve decided to take more risks, not less. Double down on my mistakes and failures. Wear my tiara more.  Look more ridiculous (my teenager would argue that’s not really possible). And rock my purple lipstick, even when my best friends tell me it makes me look like I should be floating at the bottom of the river.

Here’s the deal: the older I get, the more I suspect that our business–our real business–is to be happy today.  And to help others be happy, too.  I know 80-year-olds who have more enthusiasm, passion, and joy in life than some 20-year-olds. When I grow up, I’m gonna be like them. As George Burns said, “You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old.”

And I’m going to order myself a t-shirt that says “Bad-ass on the inside.”

Comments on: "Bad-ass on the inside" (7)

  1. Girl, you’re singing to the choir. I like the way you think!. You’re so right, I see more passion and drive in the eighty-somethings than the twenty-somethings… and we won’t discuss the teens and tweens.

    I don’t get it. Boomer babies can’t stop re-inventing themselves at 50 plus, sixty, and seventy… while too many Next Generations seem to be falling in the peer cookie cutter mold. Do we have to start burning our bras again? Okay, I was barely in a training bra then.

    Prime example, I used to love watching HGTV’s House Hunters show, (P.S. I also Zumba and Rebound) but now they’re focusing their searches on the whiny “starting out” crowd that only want granite and stainless still and a nice size yard for grilling. Oh, excuse me I just took a quick nap. They seem to be settling into this mold created by new home developers. .

    I still have a lot of hope for them, that’s why they’re my business focus, and there are many exceptions to the rule. Facebook Creator comes to mind and many more. With that said, some of our young-uns should grab their iPad, take notes and become grasshoppers to the older set who are taking life by storm. That’s what I’m doing. Great Post!

    • Gayle,
      I agree with you; it seems like young married couples just starting out have HUGE expectations for a house. When we got our first house, I didn’t know the difference between linoleum, tile and slate; I was just thrilled to have a house! Now I see young couples buying more house than we have now, and that was never my goal, to be married to a mortgage!

    • Yes, when we were buying our first house, we were told to expect to downgrade over the apartment we were living in. We did not start out with our first house with granite countertops and slate floors; we were just thrilled to own something that we could call our own!

      I suspect the generation after us will redefine their expectations, simply based on the economy and the unemployment rate. Maybe it’s a good thing, that we will all realize that stuff is not what life is all about!

  2. I like the way you think! My nana is the same. She is 89 and still going strong doing whatever she wants to do. We have so much fun together.

  3. I see that you’re heading toward 50, and girl, you are doing it with the right attitude. We call it the 50+/+Fit attitude, ’cause if you ain’t fit as you get older (that’s “older,” not “old”) then you ain’t gonna kick ASS as you say. Keep on keepin’ on!


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