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First, I want to say that I love this blog. Second, every time I look in the mirror I see more wrinkles and more grey hairs and I notice that my body has been reshaping itself, and not in a way I wish it were.

I stopped coloring my hair last year for various reasons but now of course the grey is (to my eyes) front and center. I am increasingly realizing no matter how much money I spend, I'm getting older, and it's showing, and I could take all the hair color and botox and surgery in the world and I still would not look like I did in my 20s and 30s.

So I started collecting pictures and stories of old women I think are beautiful, old women with grey hairs and wrinkles and whose bodies are clearly not young but who also have joie de vivre and humor and wisdom and passion and spirit. It does not necessarily make me happier to see the grey hair and the wrinkles but it gives me options and a sense that there is more than one way to be in this body.

Thank you for your wonderful posts here and for this one especially, which I really needed to read today, after discovering another new wrinkle. :-P

Dalila Valentine

This is so true. Particularly the obsession with being skinny. When I was 12 I thought I was hugely fat (I was the same height and weight I am now at 62, when I am considered average) so when I was 13 I started smoking because I was told it spoils your appetite. In my 20s I took amphetamines. I'm sure putting all this junk into my body (not to mention roasting my vocal cords) did some damage, particularly because I did it when I was so young. I often wondered what type of adolescence/young adulthood I might have had as a singer if I hadn't been smoking and had left my weight alone.

One thing I've noticed that happens when you get older is you are not supposed to care about how you look, beyond looking neat and "professional" if you're still working. As a turnabout on the "too fat to be photographed" thing, I often sulk that no one wants to take my picture. Most of my friends my age don't have smart phones with cameras and if they do, it would never occur to them in a million years to take a picture of me because I'm wearing a sexy dress. They would think it was silly.

I bought a smart phone (for other reasons) and tried taking a few pictures of myself in sexy outfits but I'm not very good at it (I look old, tired, and worried; not like the photos I see on Facebook of the smiling, casually tousled, energetic 30-40 year old singers I envy so much).

I am sorry that you are feeling worse about yourself than you did before you lost weight. I think everything you learned about nutrition means that you are better off than you were before, healthwise, whatever you weigh. Studies now show that it's how much sugar a person eats, not what they weigh, that determines their risk for diabetes, for example.

In any event, thank you for another great piece of writing.


Thanks, Kim! You know, some of the most gorgeous women I've ever seen are in their 70s and 80s. My mom's BFF is one of these. She is elegant, she is beautiful, she carries herself like the woman of worth she is and by golly, she has a boyfriend too, who really wants her to marry him. I hope, and believe, that when I get to be her age, I'll be the same. It's the in between part that's kind of awkward.

I really like what you say about there being more than one way to be in this body. That's the way I'm looking for. :) PS, re hair: I admire you for stopping the coloring. I don't have all that much silver yet; and if it could just go all silver overnight, I'd totally do leave it. I just don't want streaks. It looks like a bird pooped on your head. ;)

DV, I never look as good in photos as I do in my head, either. Bah, humbug!


Excellent post.


This is a great post... and so much I could say about it. It's all such a careful balancing act, isn't it? Accepting and loving yourself for being you. Knowing that YOU are enough.. and also constantly trying to better yourself, work out more, lose 20 lbs, etc. I'm not to the point in my life where I think of aging, BUT I do know that when I was thin in my early and mid 20s, I KEPT myself that way. It required working out all the time, eating very little and missing out on a lot of life. Once I got married and settled down, it was clear. I didn't have time to be obsessed with my appearance. Not to say I don't clean up okay, because I'm quite the sleeper hit ;-)

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Where's Cindy Singing Next?

  • Madame Armfeldt, A Little Night Music, Alamo City Opera
    February 3 & 4, 2018 https://www.alamocityopera.org/

Cindy on Stage

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    I play dress-up for a living.

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