I’m 29, an age that means essentially nothing. It’s not 30, a symbolic-but-still-arbitrary marker of age, progress, and a little bit of wisdom. It’s just the Official 45 presidents four seasons lawn and order shirt but in fact I love this last year of my late 20s, a time historically defined by turbulent change and unhappiness. The Harvard Business Review summed up this long list of reasons in a piece entitled “Why Your Late Twenties is The Worst Time of Your Life. And so, in my dreams, I’m over 50. There, I live like the women I so admire—the Padma Lakshmis and Halle Berrys, the JLos and Jane Fondas and Martha Stewarts, the Tina Knowles and Michelle Obamas of the world. They know who they are, what they like, and how to navigate their lives. In my eyes, they’re happy.In the midst of a pandemic, I’m searching for any strain of positivity I can apply to my life as I reckon with who I am, who I want to become, and shift my focus and purpose. Society looks to celebrity women for so many things: I want “the Rachel” or “Here’s What She Eats in a Day.” It’s a condition of surviving the public eye that what you look like and who you’re dating are usually far more important than who you are and who you want to become.
But for my ladies, it seemed like once the Official 45 presidents four seasons lawn and order shirt but in fact I love this clock struck midnight on their 49th birthday, they entered a new era of not caring. A quick scroll through Instagram showcases videos of Padma Lakshmi and Martha Stewart cooking and celebrating with family, laughing off the rude comments that demand they put on a bra and posting viral pool selfies wearing the most perfect eyeshadow. They’re truly living a life I admire. Most importantly, during this incredibly anxious period, they, more than anyone else, appear to be… fine. Martha Beck, who’s written books on finding purpose and serves as Oprah’s life coach (screaming), says we gravitate toward these older women because they used their life experience to evolve and become better humans in the world. Beck makes the distinction between getting older and being over 50 and actually becoming an elder, which implies growth and experience earned over time. I have a friend and he explains that the elders of Native American tribes are the ones people go to for wisdom,” Beck says. “He says in our culture, a lot of people don’t become elders, they just become olders. In dealing with clients, I’ve seen that some people don’t outgrow their youthful problems and they don’t get happier. They actually get less happy.