I Resented My Body – Diary of a Middle Aged Woman

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It was something that I never thought would happen to me.  Something that I didn’t think even existed inside of me.  A series of thoughts, realisations, and perceptions that I never imagined would enter my head.

The thought that I wanted to be younger.  The thought that I wanted to look younger.  And worse still this thought process was kicked off by a man.  A younger man.  A younger man who wasn’t even interested in me yet one I thought about in those moments in between work.

I found myself looking in the mirror and feeling annoyed about my changing shape.  The extra pockets of flab where I didn’t think they should be.  The few yet few too many grey hairs insisting on appearing around my hairline.  The extra lines on my face that were threatening to become wrinkles.

I saw fit young women and couldn’t believe that I found myself wanting to turn back time so that I could be on the side of the equation where youth was on my side.

It didn’t make any sense.  Forty five isn’t much different to the number 46 but somehow it was way too close to 50.  Fifty!?!?! I never thought the day would come when that number was associated with me.

I realised that the days where I always looked way younger than my chronological age might one day come to an end.  And oh my god, what about my Duracell Bunny energy?  What would I do if that ever ceased to be?

Oh. Breathe. I had to breathe.  I had to stop and look at myself.  Not look at myself from that place of annoyance or resentment, but look at myself in terms of the bigger picture of my life.

I’ve never been attractive in the conventional ‘cover of a magazine’ or ‘walking down the runway’ way.  I’m not a model.  My days of being naturally slim were brought to an abrupt end in my late 20’s when a holier than thou doctor destroyed my thyroid gland. My work isn’t based upon how I look so I was kind of in shock that such conversations could even enter my head.

So what was the moment that helped to restore my sanity, and what did I do to adjust my thinking to move beyond the depths of looking back with regret?

I finished my Facebook post at this point, and several people then insisted that I share exactly what I did in order to deal with it.

As I look back on that crazy moment in time I realised there were some key things that I did in order to pull myself out of that space and move onwards and upwards.  They are in no particular order, and it may be that one of them is enough to give you that spark of inspiration, or you might use a combination of the ones that particularly resonate with and appeal to you.

1. Gratitude.  As part of my Magic & Gratitude Programme we have what are called the Daily Gratitude Practices.  Every day my participants receive an e-mail which outlines a short yet powerful Gratitude Practice for that day.  One Practice is simply being grateful for the air that you breath.  Another is being grateful for your body.  I started being aware of my body and people around me, and playing the gratitude game.  I might find myself sprinting across the street and be grateful that I have legs that can run.  I might see someone with a physical challenge or disability and I would take a moment to thank that part of my body for working perfectly.  It sounds like simple stuff yet it does really make you stop and think.  You might even want to go as far as keeping a Gratitude Journal.  The one that I supply for my Programme’s is in the picture below.

The Magic & Gratitude Programme with Marilyn Devonish

The Magic & Gratitude Programme with Marilyn Devonish

2. Valuing my ‘Home.’  I realised that my body is my true home.  Yeah sure I live In a house, a house that I love, and the home that I am in all the time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year is my body.  I reminded myself that in the same way one might be ‘house proud’, that I should be body proud.   If I was busy just looking at all the flaws, I would miss all of the other great things and loose appreciation for how they serve, look after, and protect me.

3. A Feat of Engineering. I also took a moment to marvel at how amazing and wonderful the human body is.  Even in those times where a body is damaged or physically challenged, it still has a level of resilience and a healing power that is sometimes nothing short of miraculous.  How could I really be annoyed at that?

4. Breathe.  I made a point of more regularly doing my Ha Breathing which comes from the Hawaiian Huna practice.  Not only does it calm and centre you within seconds, it also helps cleanse and revitalise the body by aiding better oxygen flow and exchange.

5. Best Bits.  I am a believer in the adage ‘focus on what you want and say it the way you want it’ so I took some time to focus on my best bits, including those things that go beyond the aesthetic and obviously physical; My quick mind, my creativity, my multi tasking brain, my sense of humour, my energy, my vitality, my outlook on life.  None of these things would exist without my body.  Again, I had to be grateful and very appreciative of that.

6. It’s a Privilege.  You only have to flick through social media or watch mainstream TV to know that people are losing their lives suddenly, every single day.  Be it through illness, malnutrition, or a tragic accident.  To make it back every day and to go to sleep and to wake up again the next day is truly a gift.  And to wake up fit and healthy and happy and well?  Just awesome.  I’m a fan of the Fast and Furious film franchise.  The late Paul Walker would have been 41 this month had his life not ended so abruptly on that fateful day.  (If you’re not a fan you can read my previous Blog post: Tyrese Gibson weeps for his dead co-star Paul Walker). I know that all of his cast members would have loved to have celebrated his 46th year and beyond with him even if his body was no longer in great shape.  His daughter Meadow posted this photograph to mark the day:

The Actor late Paul Walker with his daughter Meadow Walker.

The Actor late Paul Walker with his daughter Meadow Walker.

That, and the so many anniversaries of loss that roll around or are created each day make me really stop and take stock.

7. Possibilities. One of the pages that I follow on Facebook is Growing Bolder.  Their posts are so inspirational and open the mind up to possibilities that I might not have even considered even though I am very young in comparison to their target audience.  I mean a Cowgirl at 102 years young?  Who would have thought it?!

Constance the 102 year old Cowgirl Photograph courtesy of Growing Bolder

Constance the 102 year old Cowgirl
Photograph courtesy of Growing Bolder

8. I’m 120!  I always say that I’d love to live to be 120 as long as I’m fit and healthy, mentally sharp and full of energy.  I realised that would not even be a possibility if I spent time focusing on what I didn’t like or being upset by it.  For that to happen I’ve got to keep myself fit and healthy and well, not for some fictitious young hot guy, but for me.

9. Reframe.  So many things reframed me.  Things I saw and heard, people I met.  I joked with someone that “50 was the new 20.”  Then when you see pictures like the one below of Actress Jada Pinkett-Smith and her 60 year old mother it kind of makes you go: “Erm, yes, that may well be true.”

Jada Pinkett-Smith and her mother aged 60

Jada Pinkett-Smith and her mother aged 60

It doesn’t take away from the fact that I am still technically speaking ‘middle aged’, it does however put a kind of different spin on things.  There used to be a saying that you’re as young as the woman you feel.  I know it makes reference to an older man with a younger woman however there is truth in it.  I reminded myself that mindset plays such a big part in how I perceive my life.

10. Music. For those of you that follow me on Facebook you will know how much I love my #DanceBreaks and #SongBreaks.  Whenever I want to change my state and focus in an instant, I often put on some music which works every time. The ripple effect of that can carry on for hours.  There is also a song by Ronan Keating which has the line: “Lovin’ each day as if it’s your last. Dancing all night and having a blast.”  I’d say that’s kind of where it’s at.

The side effects of music.  Just what the doctor ordered!

The side effects of music. Just what the doctor ordered!

I also asked the Doctor (Cos Fantis) that I am running my Limitless – Where Neuroscience Meets Science Fiction Workshop with about the neurological impact of music because we are presenting practical ways that people can change their brain, neurology, and performance, and this was his response to me:

Cos Fantis Marilyn Devonish, – You’re happy, healthy and you’ve got an amazing figure and a beautiful mind… I would say you are deeply “overpowered” with the common side effects of music- KEEP DOING IT AND CRANK UP THE VOLUME !

Of course we were having a bit of a laugh as well, however I do believe that music is transformative and stimulates the mind and body in the most incredible ways.  I also often finish my #DanceBreak with a laugh having copied some YouTube video, closing with the words: “Yep, I’ve still got it!”   It also brings me to another point.

11. Laugh.  Laughter and having a sense of humour is massive for me.  When I think back to some of the most awful things that I’ve been through in my life, laughter has been one of the things that has carried me through.  With this situation I did the: “Oh Marilyn, really, what are you like?!”  🙂

12. Pussycat Dolls.  One of their biggest hits ‘Don’t Cha’ had the line: “Don’t cha wish your girlfriend was hot like me?”  I  also took a look in the mirror and although there is definitely much room for improvement, I am also pretty lucky to be in the shape that I’m in when I compare myself to people who have similar thyroid issues to me.  I was also looking through one of my photo albums and looked at some of the photographs contained within.  I knew that there were people out there who would be more than pleased to trade places with me.

Marilyn Devonish at the Notting Hill Carnival

Marilyn Devonish at the Notting Hill Carnival

13. Get a Grip.  There was of course that piece where I also had to give myself a metaphorical kick up the behind and a talking to in order to get things in perspective and get a grip.  Would I really want to put myself in a situation where going out with someone meant that I also had to constantly worry about how I looked?  Well no, of  course not.  That would be my version of a living hell and the very opposite of what I want my life to be.  I want to continue to be in a space where I am accepting of who I am and who I am evolving into.  Continuing to live that kind of life couldn’t happen if I allowed myself to remain in the space of judging myself for what I was experiencing and getting into fighting time.

Lauren Hutton - Stop trying to make me younger. Photograph courtesy of Growing Bolder

Lauren Hutton – Stop trying to make me younger.
Photograph courtesy of Growing Bolder

14. Recognise the Excuses.  I have enough reference points in the world to know that my age doesn’t have to determine how I look and feel (just cue Jada’s mother again for starters).  It was then time for me to decide.  Did I want to sit back and let things slide, or did I want to do my bit to perk them up a bit?  Again, this wasn’t from the perspective of trying to look good for someone else, it was just about how I wanted to be for me.

There were probably some other thoughts and mindset shifts along the way however these are the key things that came to mind as a I did a quick retrospective analysis.

There have been over 80 comments on my Facebook page about this original post so if some of those people don’t mind sharing I will share some of them because they were absolutely amazing and offered some really brilliant perspectives.

So Mandy and Sheena, there you have it!

As they used to say in one of my favourite TV shows: “Live long and prosper.”

Marilyn ♥

 

ABOUT MARILYN DEVONISH

Marilyn Devonish is a Business Graduate, holds a Post Graduate Chartered Institute of Marketing Diploma, is a Corporate Trainer, Management Consultant, and Prince2 Project Manager.  She is also a Certified Trainer of NLP, Certified Trainer of Time Line Therapy, Certified Trainer of Hypnosis, Certified PhotoReading™ Instructor, Soul Plan Reader, and Certified Angel Intuitive and Angel Tarot Card Reader, and Certified Life and Executive Coach.

She is also a Practitioner in EFT, EmoTrance, DNA Theta Healing, Hawaiian Huna, Access Bars, Access Consciousness, Energetic NLP, Positive EFT, Past Life Regression, Opening the Heart (OTH), Future Life Progression, Archetypal Profiling, and Reiki.

In addition Marilyn is Freelance Magazine Writer, Keynote Speaker, and Workshop Facilitator.  She has been in the field of personal development since the year 2000 after giving up on her Chartered Accountancy studies to become a Coach and Hypnotherapist.

In addition to running public workshops and events, she also designs and delivers bespoke Corporate and industry trainings.

CONTACT INFORMATION

E-mail: marilyn@tranceformationsTM.com

Website: www.tranceformationsTM.com 

 

 





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About the Author:

Marilyn Devonish has been described as the UK equivalent of Oprah Winfrey, Marianne Williamson, Anthony Robbins, a dash of Doreen Virtue, and the trio from Charmed all rolled into one. I (Marilyn Devonish) have admit that was too big of a statement for me to own, but I equally admit that I do like the sound of it and it did make me smile. Marilyn Devonish - Herself since Year 2000.

Discussion

  1. Ammana Shaka  December 19, 2014

    I think most women at some point ” go there” regarding age and youth. Whatever triggers it your I” get over it ” set of tools offers useful advice to those seeking answers. As someone who lost a sister when she was a mere 45 years young I find myself grateful for every year I get pass that number…. Thanks for sharing ☺️

    (reply)
    • Marilyn Devonish  December 19, 2014

      Ammana thank you for the comment and sharing. And yes, every day that we wake up is indeed a gift that is denied to many. Mx

      (reply)

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