May 4, 2016

Pretty Young Thing No More: On Aging (somewhat) Gracefully.

bubble gum pink woman

I will turn 32 this year. Not a bad age. I’m single and independent and I’ve got my sh*t together—most of the time. They say, though, that there will come a point in any single woman’s life where the reality of getting older will nonchalantly knock on her door.

You see, unlike men, us women—well, we age.

Sure, we can age gracefully, and we almost always do, but somehow it’s never like how men age. When single men age, they’re perceived to become wiser (even when that’s hardly the case), they’re even compared to wine (as if wine will ever be that mediocre). But when women get older, we’re kind of shelved in to the “old-maid” category. We’re perceived to be defective goods, despite success our in careers.

We get the sad shrugs and the pitiful stares.

Now, for a single and independent woman who has her sh*t together (most of the time), that reality of aging would come in several mini moments—like when a friend’s gynecologist told her she’s running our of healthy eggs (she’s 38), or when you see the first sign of crow’s feet in the corners of your eyes, or when your metabolisms slows down to a sloth’s pace. And most recently, you get played by a man for a younger girl.

This was pointed out to me by a friend before she started singing an off-key version of Michael Jackson’s P.Y.T (Pretty Young Thing). I’m not a P.Y.T. anymore. I used to be the young and vibrant soul who bounced off bar walls. I was fun! I was exhilarating! I was the pretty young thing you couldn’t take your eyes (or hands) off of.

I’ll be turning 32 this year. I’m not as vibrant as I used to be. My bounces are calculated and I would very much rather have a quiet, chill-out session than smash tequila shots in a bar. I can still party—I think—but I would like to have no hangovers the next day so I can run, crawl , bike or do whatever the hell’s necessary to get rid of my gut—or at the very least, burn off the Krispy Kreme I ate for breakfast.

I’m not a P.Y.T. anymore. I’m an older and wiser version of that girl. Not that I was ever your usual P.Y.T. to begin with—I’ve always been 24 going on 40. The way I see it, my age has finally caught up with me. I do not own anything from Forever 21. My bags and jewelry are gorgeous and I paid for them all. I have read more books than the your average P.Y.T.’s daily selfie allowance. I pay my own bills and I can watch a movie and dine on my own.

I don’t mind not being a P.Y.T. anymore. You can go ahead and tap out—go pick the young’n and be done with it. I’m fine. I’m glorious and fabulous. My world is cozy, comfy and safe. It’s not rambunctious and thoughtless. I will come bearing gifts because—well, I can afford it. I’m older and I refuse to settle for second best. I will not take sh*t from anyone. I will question your intentions and I will demand some answers, and if the answers are not enough, I will walk away.

I will not let you waste my time. Because guess what? Time is my ally. It does add numbers to my years, but it has made me wiser. Time made me love myself a little more each day. So yeah, I’m not a P.Y.T. anymore.

I’m glad that I’m older. I can now love wiser.

Lucky is the man who will love my crow’s feet and donut gut, because I have done Love so many times I didn’t have a choice but to become better at it. This will be a partnership and not daycare center. I will have your back and you will have mine. We will become better people because I have seen the world and my heart has aged and I know how kindness and humanity works and how it can take you to wonderful places.

You will never doubt, not even once, that we’re headed to the right direction.

So, I’m not a Pretty Young Thing anymore. Isn’t that grand?

I’ll be 32 this year. And I bet you I’ll be twice as awesome when I turn 33 next year.



Author: Amabel Joy Marasigan

Image: travis nesbitt/Flickr 

Editor: Emily Bartran

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