I’d Rather be Kind

“Youth and beauty are not accomplishments; they’re the temporary, happy bi-products of time and/or DNA. Don’t hold your breath for either”

~Carrie Fisher

No one is immune to getting older; we all suffer from the inevitable march of time.

The other day, I commented to one of my coworkers: “I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but I love your hair”. As it turned out, I wasn’t the first person that week who had said something. The interesting thing was that her hair was grey – or greying in the way of Rogue in Xmen (but brown hair vs red) – but she was probably around my age. She mentioned she started greying when she was 19 and had spent years/decades coloring her hair to hide the grey but after a while it became too bothersome.

Similarly, that’s why I stopped coloring my hair. Partially because I couldn’t color my hair the color that I wanted, but also because it was both too expensive and too much of a bother. I stopped coloring my hair the January of the year that I turned 40 and I haven’t colored it since. I was going to embrace the journey into my forties, grey hair and all! And you know what? I kinda dig it!

The fact is, everyone ages, there is no escaping it. Sure, you could shell out massive amounts of money for botox or liposuction or facelift or a boob job to try to avoid it… or you can gracefully embrace the slow march of time and greet the greying hair and crow’s feet with open arms!  

I think the problem is so much of things today is based on looks. We try not to (or at least myself) “judge a book by its cover”, but when it comes right down to it, what people see first will create an immediate impression and will cloud your interactions with that person. It’s hard not making immediate assumptions about a person, and I admit that I’m guilty of it! Everyone is guilty of this – and I challenge you if you say that you don’t.

I remember once seeing a video of someone who was blind. Personally, I would be devastated if I lost my sight as creating art is too important to me. This person said his blindness wasn’t a disability, but a blessing – and that sighted people had the disability. As he said, people with sight are cursed because they make judgements based on appearance and since he doesn’t have that ability, he has to base his impressions of a person by their actions and words. How you look doesn’t show how kind you are – or empathetic, or caring. People can be beautiful to look at but ugly on the inside.

I’d rather be kind and caring and passionate and empathetic than pretty. I’d rather have a beautiful soul than a beautiful body…. But to each their own.

One of the reasons I take care of my body with yoga and at the gym is that “working out” (whatever that looks like) really is the only fountain of youth. It’s not a magic pill or injections or permanently pulling or tucking your body into shapes it’s not meant to be in. I will always move in some way as once you stop moving, that’s it. Do you know why most people end up in assisted living or care homes? Because they can’t effectively do a squat – which means they can’t get up off a toilet.

Always remember this: beauty is subjective. It’s subjective to a time and place. In the past, being fat was a sign of wealth. Certain countries find being pale attractive as it shows you don’t work outside as a laborer and must have money. Other countries force feed pre-teen girls 6000 calories a day as being overweight is beautiful and it’ll attract a rich husband.

We subject ourselves to countless acts striving to reach that unrealistic, highly subjective desire to be beautiful. We wear corsets or waist trainers. We slather creams on our body to try and erase scars and stretch marks and wrinkles. We go under the knife to remove or add things to our body that aren’t meant to be there. We take pills to curb appetites or “melt away” fat. We do “cleanses” which end up being a laxative which could cause permanent damage to our colon. We go on extreme diets and cut out whole groups of food.

And for what? To line the pockets of people who don’t care about your physical or mental health? Screw that!

Take care of you, for YOU! You have a choice – every single person has the right and ability to choose – how and why they take care of themselves and NOONE has the right to tell you otherwise! If you want to have purple hair, then have purple hair! If you want to get a tattoo, then get a tattoo! Or a piercing. Dress in a way that makes you feel good and happy! Shop second hand or consignment stores and create your own unique style! Wear makeup or don’t!

There’s more important things in life than conforming into a box someone wants to stuff you in! Why would you want to fit in when you’re meant to stand out?! There is no one else in this whole world that is you – so have fun with it! Be your weird, quirky self and find others that can appreciate your individuality!!!

Stop limiting your life to “diet and exercise”… there’s more to life than that! Don’t ruin something super fun because you’re thinking about how much weight you’re going to gain or how much you’re going to have exercise to work it off!

Stop the madness and live your life!!!

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