I like what Suzanne Braun Levine’s says in her blog on The Huffington Post website where she discussed Caroline Kennedy’s emergence into politics. Levine is the author of a new book, Fifty is the New Fifty.
“Women in their fifties and sixties –what I call our Second Adulthood — are a new breed, liberated by better health, greater longevity, experience in the larger world, and self-confidence that is increasing every day. Many are, as Caroline appears to have been, galvanized by reduced emotional demands as their children move out into the world; they find that they can, as one woman told me, ‘go out of the emotional management business.’ And start taking care of their own business.”
Instead of focusing on the loss that often the empty nest syndrome brings up, Levine focuses on the freedom and renewed energy that become available when the emotional drain of taking care of the kids finally ends. I also see aging as a positive process and I invite all aging women to rethink what aging means.
Yes, we might have to spend more time to take care of our body than we used to at 30, to be more careful about what we eat, to drink good water, take supplements, and exercise, and to make sure we get the touching we need to increase our love hormone production (oxcytocin), but the wonderful results are healthier mind and healthier body. Making love also plays an important role in keeping us more positive, in better shape, with a sharp memory, and improved skin . . . just to mention a few benefits.
In the East, older people are more venerated than in the West. What we can do here is make ourselves heard through volunteering our work, through writing books and doing workshops and through counseling. There is a major transmission of knowledge that happens when we connect personally with younger people who need guidance. Books help to open our minds to the availability of this experiential knowledge, but the actual transmission of knowledge happens in person.
I would invite all the aging women out there to see what they could contribute, and then put together your package of knowledge and share it. As you see the results of your giving, the growing wrinkles become less important. The sagging breasts become more full of love — and men love!