I just filled out an online survey and with great confidence put my age at 47. I wonder if I could stay 47 for a while.
I actually turned 50 this year.
We had a family friend growing up who turned 37 for about 25 years. 47 is our family’s lucky number. And, it seems to be the age I’m the most convinced I actually am.
It’s a lovely halfway point, too. Assuming good health including mental, 94 is a great age to live to. I do love a good denouement in fiction, but you know I’m not ready for that. I don’t believe I’ve reached my zenith yet. I still get better, kinder, and more powerful every day.
I’m in the best running shape of my life.
I’m not taking no for an answer. Yes, yes, to 47 forever.
Except when I turn 94. Then we’ll start the clock again.
By the way, I love my aging body. I celebrated her with a little jig last night realizing she’s been there for me for 50 years now. Wow. I have such gratitude, which makes a wonderful salve to rub on my aches and pains. So it doesn’t feel like denial or like I’m ageist. In fact, I like people of all ages quite a lot.
So why then? Why freeze time? It feels like when my daughter was in utero and we never asked to learn her gender. I just loved the not knowing, feeling this being’s wild amazing energy inside me without boxing it in in any way.
It feels like that. Like if I’m always 47, then anything seems possible—plausible even. I’m less likely to start telling myself stories about my own limits.
When those limits do show up, I intend to be kind. Byron Katie thinks that expecting our aging bodies to perform like our youthful ones is top-line insane. I know she’s right. But also, I like being unboxed. Maybe with all assumptions out the window, strange and unusual miracles really do keep sprouting up all over the place. If you’d told me that at 50 (or even 47) I’d be enjoying the time of my life writing songs and playing bass guitar in a band? At 8, I might have said, “Yeah but I’m still a famous actress too, right?” At 30, I might have said, “No way!” with an awkward smile of hope. Whoop, whoop. Now I run like a child circling my arms and pumping my fists. Yes! Thank you.
Last night I dreamt I was flying and having the time of my life to Natasha Bedingfield’s lyrics, “Feel the rain on your skin. No one else can feel it for you. Only you can let it in. No one else, no one else can speak the words on your lips.”
In my flying dream, I chose to land in my friend Megan’s arms, and we both wound up laughing on the grass.
Whatever you call this (p)age, the rest is still unwritten.