Age happens.  When we’re young women, we don’t give age much thought.  But when we cross that imagery line into middle-age, we think about it – a lot.  Fifty is a smack in the face when we yank out another grey hair, stick our head in the freezer to counteract a hot flash, or (shhhh), when we sneak into those clothing stores for ‘older women’ to buy pants thats actually fit and feel comfortable.

I didn’t freak out on my 50th birthday.  “It’s a number, not a state-of-mind,” I told myself and anyone who would listen.  My friends told me that I looked great for my age.  I agreed.  I was still slim, somewhat fit, and could fit into most of my 23 year-old daughter’s clothes.  It wasn’t until I was close to my 51st birthday that middle-age hit me between my eyes.

I remember it like it was yesterday.  I was golfing with a few of my 30-something girl friends. I was blown away by the ‘too, too cute’ golf outfit worn by one of them.  I asked her where she had bought it so that I could buy it too.  The next day I went to the golf shop, picked out that ‘too, too cute’ skort and top, along with several other cute pieces, and happily strutted to a dressing room.  What followed was my worst fashion nightmare.  The ‘too, too cute’ golf skort and top looked ‘so, so horrible’ on me.  In fact, all the pieces I brought into the dressing room looked awful on me.  I stared at the heap of clothes like I had just witnessed an accident.  What I saw actually occured but my mind was having a tough time grasping its’ reality.

It took me about a week to conclude that even though I was slim and somewhat fit, my body had changed and that clothes fit  differently.  Clothes worn by slim, fit, 30-somethings didn’t have the same ‘wow’ factor on me.  My waist had thickened, my under arms had a little wobble, and my legs (even though long) had developed a dimply and weathered look.   So I made the decision to say goodbye to short lengths, low slung waistbands,  clingy fabrics, pretty bows and other girlie accents to say hello to more tailored clothes that disguised my problem areas and accentuated my best features – humor, confidence, and style.  And guess what?  I don’t look like a ‘middle-aged’ woman.  My style is about who I am now, now who I was.  I guess wisdom does come with age.