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By January 8, 2012December 9th, 2014Claudia's Corner

One month before my 61st. birthday, I embarked upon a learning that would change my life.

That was five years ago. I changed my body, my view of the world and my place in it, my acceptance of responsibility for myself, my food, my exercise, my problem solving, my career…my life.
Part of that meant leaving a marriage of 40 years, breaking up a family. I felt an incredible sense of peace for the first time in a long time, maybe ever…being alone, being quiet, being focused on how I wanted my days to be structured, being aware of the rhythm and flow I needed in order to live to my fullest.
A year into that, I started to panic. I had grown so much, had changed how I viewed relationships, had done so much work on the inner me and I was a hottie, but I was alone. I felt that I was a lot to go to waste. I worried that I would never be loved, that I would never have some one to love. I allowed this to create a sadness in me at the very time I was doing what I loved doing and was creating what I wanted to create.
This made me know I had just seen the tip of the iceberg, that I still had a tremendous amount of attitude correction to make. I wanted to grow to the place where I could mean it when I said that I was enough for myself; that my happiness, fulfillment, life did not depend on whether someone else was in it with me. Not an easy task, but I have made great progress!
Five years later, the goals I have set for my physical body continue to be met. I work every day on the spiritual body…that will never end. My big challenge is my mental body for I can be lazy.
I am still a ‘hottie’, but with more wrinkles! I am still alone.
Aging and being female can be so challenging for women. I live in Dallas…more silicone and hair products than most cities in the country! Every day I see women who have spent thousands of dollars on cosmetic surgery in an attempt to turn back the clock. Some of these women look good – we say they look “rested” down here in Texas! Others look like caricatures of themselves. There is a sadness in that to me.
I could have work done on my face and look ‘rested’ too. But then I have a neck, hands, tummy that might belie my face. Where do you stop? And even if I did all that, spent tens of thousands of dollars on surgery, I would just look like a 66 year old woman terrified of getting ‘old’. How could I have a tummy tuck, when my jagged caesarian scar represents life for my only child? I don’t like pain, don’t like the idea of foreign stuff in my body, and don’t want to have to stop my exercise program or my life during the recovery period. Clearly, I am not a candidate for the knife!
When I look ahead and ‘see’ less in front of me than behind me, it is sobering. I want to live forever, to quote a song lyric! Do I want to go back to the 70’s, 80’s? Absolutely not.
I have created peace, stillness in my life, but, more importantly, I am creating peace and stillness in me. I joke that often I feel like Benjamin Button…my life is so very different from that of my lifelong friends. I am building a business, continuing to develop knowledge and skills in a relatively new career, while they are retired or cutting back, traveling even more than we used to, and enthralled with grandparenting. There is no judgement here, just fact.
Would I change anything about these last five years? That’s a silly question! We do what we are able to do at the time. I needed to go through every second of the entirety of my life in order to arrive where I am and be ready to go where I am supposed to go from here.
What I believe is that the best face lift is a smile. Cosmetic surgery should be thought of as the corrections one makes by ‘cutting out’ the destructive thoughts which lead to disempowering emotions that create feelings of sadness, lack of worth, bitterness, pain, anger, feelings of loss, loneliness and inadequacy. Life is either too short or too long depending on how it is being lived. You can be really old at 40!
My girlfriends and I are growing old gracefully. Our sense of humor helps. We must be doing something right: at a recent dinner at Charley Palmer’s in the Joule Hotel, the gentleman seated next to us said he was glad to be by the Sex in the City table!
Another year? Bring it on!