Can I confess something to you? Well, here goes, I just celebrated a milestone birthday, aka, reaching my mid 30’s. And here’s the thing, for the first time, I am struggling with it, because I am really feeling my age. Not in the aches and pain sort of way, but rather, in the realization that youth is fleeting. While I fully accept my body just the way it is, I am suddenly coming to terms with the reality that others may not. And while, I know this sounds incredibly superficial, being regarded as attractive matters to me.
I wish so badly that it didn’t. I wish that I could just go out into the world not giving a damn what people think 100 percent of the time, but honestly, I do care. Every so often, this weird feeling overtakes me where I am not sure how I am portraying myself to my friends or even those around me. Again, I want so badly to spout off about how looks don’t matter, and it’s what’s inside that really counts. But if I’m being honest, first impressions do matter. How you look, smell, smile, or even just carry yourself can make a lasting imprint on a person. And I cannot help but worry that as I age, I may have to put more effort into ensuring that I project the image that I want. That statement alone puzzles me, with deep conflicting emotions of wanting a devil may care attitude, but also, craving a little bit of attention from time to time.
Take for example, an event that happened on my birthday, which might better illuminate where I am at right now. I have a friend that I find quite attractive (OK I actually have quite a few because honestly I love my inner circle to pieces), but for this story let`’s just focus on the one. He`’s a man that I would find myself quite attracted to if things were a little different, ie valuing the friendship far more than incorporating anything sexual. Yes, that is a mutual thing, and not some cheesy friendzone nonsense. For me, a friendship with this guy just makes complete sense and anything physical just wouldn`’t. But in a moment of drunkenness, he mentioned something off the cuff about me being gorgeous, as an almost afterthought during a conversation where I was trying to figure out which of the fine ladies at our table he was most interested in so I could encourage him.
Booze was a factor, and we have never talked about attractiveness prior to this, so while I could completely be missing the mark about context here, those words were uttered. And without rhyme or reason I found myself awash with this complete wave of relief. Sweet, a friend I find attractive thinks I am attractive too. That`’s awesome, quick mental high five, and I happily went on with my night. But days later that`’s where I find myself in a bit of a conundrum. Why was just being friends with this guy not enough? Why did it take him telling me I was attractive to give me that additional validation of our friendship? Why did I feel that incredible wave of relief?
Again, this isn’t one of those posts where I really want to sleep with the guy. This has nothing to do with sexual chemistry, but instead everything to do with some innate desire to be viewed as sexy by those around me. I guess it’s just startling that I have not yet grown out of that phase of my life. I genuinely wanted to be the lady in red, when I was in my early 20’s. That woman who would walk into a room and turn everyone’s head. Why? I just cannot describe exactly why, because the reality is, if that ever happened I would turn beet red, be overcome with emotion and either start giggling or crying. But again, reaching 35, I sincerely wonder, if I have missed my chance to turn all the heads in a room. Was that a mere fantasy of youth? Are these moments of feeling sexy going to become less frequent? Am I seriously going to have to start doing yoga and taking care of my body on a daily base now? Do I just have to accept that I am always going to have this superficial urge to wow people from time to time and that’s just part of who I am? Perhaps though putting a little extra effort in now isn’t this horrible beast of an idea…? Oh how I wish my looks didn’t matter on the level they do.
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