Real stories about dating and relationships in New York City. Truth is more interesting than fiction.

When I Started to Feel ?

That title originally read, “When I Started to Feel ” but I didn’t want to give people the wrong idea. This is just a short post about me and getting older. And being cool, better than cool, with getting older.

Yesterday, I retweeted an article from YourTango about why women should look forward to getting older. I was enthusiastic about it.

Shortly afterward I received this reply from @pwcaulfield

I replied that I didn’t know.  And something about loving my 30th , and 35th, too (both true). But then I thought about it some more.

When I was 26, I wasn’t afraid of getting older. Truth is, I wasn’t all that sure I’d get much older (you know, live fast – die young- leave a pretty corpse).

But I do remember a point, sometime in my 30s, when it hit me: I really didn’t care what anyone else was doing. I didn’t care what other people looked like, or weighed, or if they did or didn’t have a boyfriend/husband/kids. That comparing myself against all of the rest of humanity meant that I was always going to come up short. I was always going to be not smart enough, or pretty enough, or funny enough… I could never win.

The day I woke up and looked in the mirror and saw myself for ME was the first time I really felt sexy. The first time I even knew what that actually meant. I couldn’t have been any younger than 33 or 34. Maybe even older. I don’t know what prompted it. I just know that one day I woke up and poof, it happened. I looked in the mirror and saw me.  Just me. Not everything that I wasn’t or wanted to be. I saw who I was/am.

Sure, when I look in the mirror I see the signs of age.  I have a wrinkle, a smile line, that’s setting in by my right eye.  I like it. I think it brings character to my face. I also have some gray hairs (not that anyone else will get to see them, I have a fabulous colorist).  OK, I’m babbling.  My point is, none of the little details matter anymore. I’m cool with it all.

That’s probably not the answer that a 26 year old wants to hear.  That one day, in your 30s, you’ll wake up and realize that you’re fabulous and sexy.  But that’s the best I got.

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30 to “When I Started to Feel ?”

  1. jackie says:

    the two most important words in the entire english language anybody can learn: FUCK EVERYONE. fuck your friends, fuck your enemies, fuck your mama, fuck anyone who isn’t all about supporting you being you. the day we stop trying to please others and learn that the people who love us will only love us more if we please our damn selves, they’ll be happy for us.

    and simone, you’re 39 passing for 29 ,-). god bless fabulosity!

    • Simone Grant says:

      That’s what I should’ve called the post, FUCK EVERYONE. And thank you darling. Age has been kind to me so far. I joked last night on my date (as I munched on yummy cheese) that one day I’m going to wake and find my metabolism has slowed down and my weight will suddenly double. But so far, so good :-)

  2. michele says:

    Kudos Simone! Great post. I totally agree – you wake up and say “whoa” I’m liking me and the getting older thing kinda falls by the wayside. I really dont pay much attention to it. But I would tell a 26 year old that it get’s easier and funner (not a word I know!). And, I truly mean it. I don’t want to be 26 again. Way too much stress :)

    • Simone Grant says:

      OMG I know. I wouldn’t want to be 26 again (although I do miss being able to stay out all night drinking and still be able to make it to work the next morning). The insecurity and stress was just awful! Thanks darling!

  3. Ms. Bitch says:

    Great post. We all have to get to the point where whatever we are is just ok. Hopefully, it happens sooner than later for all of us.

    • Simone Grant says:

      Thanks. And yes, that’s it in an fabulous nutshell “whatever we are is just ok”. I do think, sadly, there are some people who never get there. They’re the sad, angry ones :-(

  4. Lan says:

    bravo. great post.

    i’m 32 and while i did worry when i hit 30, i’m so glad to be done with my 20s. what a train wreck of a decade for me. working hard to make ends meet, not knowing who i was or what i was doing and then suddenly… some clarity. sure, the economy sucks and i’ve had to make some changes, sure i don’t know everything about me (and i believe my Life will be a journey to find myself) and i’m still feeling my way around but damn, i look good and feel good doing it.

    being in my 30s is just so awesome, i can’t even put it into words. i can only imagine my 40s and on will only get better…

    • Simone Grant says:

      Amen. Financially I was actually in better shape at 29 than I am now. I had a great job, the economy was booming. All was good. But on the inside..

      I wouldn’t trade places with that old me for the world.
      Thanks XOXO

  5. KB IN NYC says:

    Incredible post Simone! Getting older is about learning to love yourself and being comfortable in your skin. I feel more confident and fabulous at 33 than I ever did at 23 & I know that 43 is going to be even better. And for the lines and wrinkles? That’s what botox is for. XKB

    • Simone Grant says:

      Absolutely. One of the blessed things about NYC, we’ve taken personal maintenance to a high art here :-) Spa week is coming up and I have a $50 facial in my future. Perhaps some microdermabrasion? Can’t wait to see you this weekend.

  6. Terry says:

    Can’t speak for others — but I’m 52 and feel like life has just begun!

    Although, in my family history- most of the men didn’t have kids til they were in their 50’s. An acquaintance asked me “do you really want to be going to your kids ball games in 10 years? Wouldn’t you rather be on the golf course?” — well, yea, I do want to go to my kids ball games– and hopefully he will be on the golf course with me.

    You get a perspective– if you care to – with time. You see what is important in life. You don’t “chase” things as much, and you don’t need to. Some never do- but you, my dear — you get life. Sometimes it is frustrating – sometimes we don’t get what we want – -and sometimes its just a pain. But I wouldn’t trade places with me ten or twenty years ago — and I can’t wait to see what is in store for me next.

    • Simone Grant says:

      I feel like you wrote this for me, this week/weekend. Sometimes life is frustrating and we don’t get what we want, *sigh*. But that’s OK. I get it.

  7. Lifebeginsat30ty says:

    I think my name says it all! 😀

    I find my 30s are way better than my 20s. Just something about knowing myself and what I want just makes living life so much better :) Rock on!

  8. Kelly says:

    Nice post—it’s like we don’t want to admit that we like getting older because all of the focus/ attention is about staying youthful. But age makes us wise and peaceful. And I remember as well the moment that I decided I just didn’t care about everyone else’s opinion of who and what I should be…although it was more like 35. Anyway, I’m seeing a few more lines, but I also feel WAY more comfortable in my own skin. That’s definitely providing a more peaceful, happy existence.

    • Simone Grant says:

      Absolutely. You mention how all the focus is about staying youthful. And that’s so true, and I’ll admit I buy into that a bit. I love hearing how young I look. Because I equate looking young with looking good.

      Strange! I’ll have to think some more about that.

  9. aoyak says:

    This feels good. Im more than lucky to have happened upon this website, because despite the fact that the story revolves around the author, the inspiration cannot but be acknowlegded

    Im 21 and I love the provocation this writing gives, to avoid the misery of the 20s :), and live it to the fullest

    • Simone Grant says:

      Thanks for chiming in. As I recall, 21 was a pretty great year. Enjoy it, and all the rest. And remember that it keeps on getting better and better. Age is a good thing.

  10. Masterdater says:

    I remember when I was younger I thought 36 was ridiculously old but now that I am here, I can’t help but think that 56 is ridiculously old. I figure as long as this wave of oblivious relativity continues I won’t mind whatever age I am.
    Take care Simone

  11. tinagirl207 says:

    love this post!i turned 35 this year,and the weeks leading up to the big day i was stressed out.i felt like i hadnt accomplished what i set out to do and i wasnt where i wanted to be in my life.but i just woke up one day and realized,i’d come this far w/o screwing up.not too much im must be doing something right.instead of worrying about what i hadnt done or didnt have,i’ve learned to be thankful what i have accomplished and what i do have.if that even makes sense.:)

    • Simone Grant says:

      Thanks. I’m glad you turned the corner and started to enjoy yourself/be easier on yourself. It’s amazing how birthdays can bring out so many of our insecurities.

  12. Simone, couldn’t agree more. My epiphany is still in progress, but it’s only within the last year (age 38) that I’ve really begun to truly love myself.

  13. Don says:

    I’m 45 now and can say my wisdom and experience are priceless to me. I know so much more and understand so much more in life that confidence is natural and easy. The 20’s are full of adventure and craziness, the 30’s are full of life’s hard knocks and lessons, and the 40’s are a time of reflection, understanding, and skillfully sailing your ship through any storm…

    • Simone Grant says:

      I don’t know about that “skillfully sailing your ship through any storm” (I’m a bit too much of a screw up for that). But I love the sentiment behind it. And yes, confidence is natural and easy, now. It’s a lovely thing.

  14. Matt says:

    i think what’s NOT sexy is someone older who pretends they are not

  15. Eugenia says:

    Dear Simone. I so agree with you. I recently celebrated my 30th birthday and I had never felt more sexy and fabulous. In fact, my 30th b-day was the best day ever. I celebrated freedom (leaving long and unhealthy relationship behind). I celebrated myself and loving everything that I am and have become that is beautiful (chic), hardworking and successful, self sufficient (really, I’m not bragging). I mean: my life just burst into flames, my garden is blooming and I enjoy watering and up-keeping it. I have some more plans to grow and build more, like family (well I hope). Now, I’m just enjoying everything that I have, 30s are new 20s so I heard. We are still young, strong and healthy. If we had learned the lessons of the 20s, we can approach our 30s in a more mature way and truly make those decisions that would set us up on the path to success. It’s like going to Disney Land at the age of 5 versus 10. At 5 the memories are vague, it seemed fun but you don’t really remember what your experience was like. At the age of 10, you remember every detail and can talk about those rollercoaster and the experience you had riding them (if fact, you finally got to ride the rollercoaster and truly enjoy the ride, taking the risk and telling all about it to your friends and why you would do it again or not). In 30s we are no longer girls but mature women not taken hostage much by b.s. from men or any kind of bs(well, if we have enough experience to decipher it). We are confident about who we are, know what we want and are not afraid to get it. Well, may be not all of us but hopefully most of us. Experience makes us tougher and wiser but we still get to keep our youth and playfulness at least for the next ten years. I have a mantra: I compete against my future better self. I know what I want to be/do tomorrow and I try to get there. Competition is too stressful and unhealthy and not worth the time or my mental health.

    Age is not what your number is, it is how you feel, look and most importantly act…You could be a child playing in a sand box at the age of 60 with your grand daughter and feel 6yo and it would be great just for that moment. You could be 30 and look and feel like an old used rug.

  16. Miss Private says:

    I keep thinking that at 26 I should be over these insecurities. I guess I’m really not alone.