Today is my birthday, so I am feeling a little bit down.
You see, when I was very small, my birthday was always the beginning of a period of mourning as my mother died 9 days after I was born. So for all the adults around me, my birthday was a reminder of a tragedy they were still grieving.
Then, on my 7th birthday, my half sister was born. Which meant my birthday thunder was stolen forever :-D
Every year, a few days before my birthday, a dark cloud descends that I can't seem to shake off. Some years it's been so awful I've pulled the duvet over my head on the actual day and slept through it. It doesn't make sense, it infuriates and puzzles the people who love me and it leaves me feeling upset and confused.
Why am I telling you this? Well, of course, that sadness I feel doesn't really belong to me - it's something I picked up as a tiny tot from the people around me.
It isn't my sadness.
By the time we reach midlife, we can often carry other people's "stuff" around...
What a week that was! Forgive me if I seem naive, but welcoming a news crew into my home, being interviewed and filmed and then appearing on the BBC isn't something I do very often (ie: never)!
It was interesting, and gratifying that the BBC decided to showcase The Midlife Movement's Face it, Own it! Project. It was also frustrating that they cut all mention of The Midlife Movement from the segment. Nevertheless, over 60 women (so far!) have hunted me down and sent their no make-up selfies to be included in the forthcoming book and exhibition.
The project has clearly struck a chord. I have been inundated with emails, not just with selfies attached, but with messages of support like the one below:
"I just wanted to thank you for taking up the topic of the natural beauty of us all. As a 63-year-old mother and a retired teacher, I appreciate the pressure to conform to a stereotypical, idealised, artificial and unattainable image of womanhood. It's wonderful to see just how...
...that is the question!
How do you feel about your hair right now? As we age, our hair gradually shows changes in colour and texture and is one of the most visible signs of ageing.
Hair changes texture with age, just as our skin does. The received convention amongst trichologists says that by age 50, 50% of the population will have 50% grey hair.
Some of us also experience hair loss, which can be distressing.
"The sudden, diffuse loss of hair from all over the scalp is called ‘telogen effluvium’ and can be the result of improper nutrition, stress, hormonal upsets and pregnancy. A reduction in your hair’s diameter can also be influenced by these things, but is most often due to genetics, follicle sensitivity to hormones, and to age." Philip Kingsley
If you have noticed your hair thinning significantly, it’s worth seeing a doctor to rule out other underlying problems such as a dysfunctional thyroid.
If you are just starting to...
Living the Life more Fabulous is an inspiring summer read from Tricia Cusden, Founder of the British pro-age make-up brand, Look Fabulous Forever.
“Living the Life More Fabulous – Beauty, Style & Empowerment for Older Women” is part manual, part manifesto, with plenty of food for thought about the way we view ageing in the Western world and, consequently, the way we view ourselves. The author is visible throughout the book in a series of gorgeous portraits (which, as a Portrait and Personal Branding Photographer, I obviously absolutely love!).
Image © Tricia Cusden
Whilst she asserts from the start that:
There has never been a better time to be an older woman,
Tricia also notes:
Our society seems to value older women only if they are ageing youthfully
Phrases such as “ageless style” and “anti-ageing” are disempowering, she argues, and her mission is to encourage older women to embrace their ageing selves and celebrate the...
Whose hands are these?
I could write reams about the sadness I feel at the slow, but relentless degradation of my body. I shall skim over the details lest it put you off your skinny latte, suffice to say that I now have more curves than angles and about as much spring-back-ability in my skin as a piece of broken knicker elastic.
I’ve changed my mind – have a few details: I now have what I like to call “silver highlights”, though who I think would actually sit in the hairdresser’s with foils on their head to achieve this effect I have no idea. Over time, my foundation wear (what a lovely, old-fashioned phrase!) has become more about containment and less about boasting and I sometimes find myself hunting for “comfortable” knickers. You know, ladies, the kind that...