As I watched Brené Brown describe her own vulnerabilities about her research on shame and vulnerability on TED and read recent blogs from Nicole Antoinette on how she had pulled her life together from the bottom of several dark holes, including speaking out on mental illness (in #4), I decided to explore my own vulnerabilities around pride and aging.
I stepped over a grey tabby ‘fat cat’ and slid down the stairs – I was vulnerable TO pride in being ‘strong,’ by carrying laundry down the stairs without turning on the light and holding on – it is the ‘life happens’ vulnerability that led me to changing my behavior on stairs, feeling grateful to have only bumps and bruises, and being annoyed at my carelessness.
As I set up my camera to photograph the bruises from my tumble, I looked at the face my front camera was showing me up close. It had wrinkles, lots of them. When had they emerged with such clarity? Feeling vulnerable ABOUT aging, I asked myself the shame question of “am I too old?”
As a corporate employee, where I felt female youthfulness was valued, when asked my age, I would reply “I am a grandmother.” Since grandmothers often range in age from 36 up, that worked for me for a long time. (NOTE: the DMV does not accept silver-frosted for hair color on driver’s license applications).
I now look like my grandmother, who had said to me when I was a young mom, “When I get up I feel as if I am 16 and then look in the mirror and wonder WHO is this old lady?” I understand that in a whole new way now.
Where is the line for being TOO OLD? – For me at 76, is it BEFORE or AFTER:
- Finishing Nicole’s Obsession Laboratory where my obsession is to join forces with women in their 40’s to 90’s in reaching long held “impossible” goals and dreams?
- Building a business around my obsession using coaching strategies and various other techniques for going around, over, under, or through obstacles?
- Attending Chris Guillebeau’s World Domination Summit 2014 in Portland, OR, next July?
- ‘Show & telling’ about books and ideas important to me in this blog space?
- Communicating about differences through using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® with career coaching clients and volunteering with the APTi Chapter Development Council (CDC) in supporting MBTI® practitioners?
What is the difference between being vulnerable TO and vulnerable ABOUT something? To me, vulnerable ABOUT includes the shame factor, which inserts an extra level of searching before one changes their behavior or perspective.
When you wake up from sleep, do you look in the mirror and rejoice in the:
- Fresh start?
- Ways in which your mind and body support you?
- Person you see there, who is just your age?
Want to make it a habit? Please join me every day through December . . .
QUESTION: What does being TOO OLD look like, feel like, sound like to you? What would make it just right for you? Please comment below.