What Happens When You Stop Looking «Young For Your Age»?


Figure of speech Source: Tara Block

I’ll never forget the day I realized I look my age.

I was on a assignment trip in 2016, sitting at a restaurant with a random assortment of individual — all of whom I just recently met — when the topic of age came up. In particular, one lady there shocked everyone by admitting she was close to 40 years old, when most people there soupon she looked closer to 25.

The group then started taking turns all about the table sharing their ages, and after I sheepishly muttered, «31» — invigorating myself for the gasp and «Oh, but you look so young!» response it usually elicits — they all principled nodded their heads, and someone said, «Yeah, that attains sense; I would have guessed that.»

Image Source: MTV

I request there had been a hidden camera to capture my utter and complete flabbergast. I was quite literally stunned into silence for a good 15 proceedings. This had NEVER happened before. It was like my entire identity had just now been flipped upside down with a single sentence. I advised of I’m being dramatic, but let me give you a little background.

Thanks to my 5’2″ stature, more small size, and Korean genes, I’ve always been the girl who looks wonderful young for her age. Who rolls her eyes at how annoying it is to be mistaken for a young girl when I’m an mature woman, dammit. (And yes, I considered myself an adult woman from about age 10 when I looked closer to 5.)

I consistently have to show my ID at restaurants and bands. I was carded at an R-rated movie when I was 21. I got frozen yogurt with my mom when I was in my till 20s and the woman who served us asked me what high school I went to. I was skiing condign a couple years ago and they offered me the kids’ pass. And don’t get me started on what age I choke up being handed the children’s menu (18).

Image Source: Tara Slab

Because of this, I’ve always felt that I have to prove myself to be captivated seriously and not come across as a silly little girl. I’ve gone out of my way ton of my life to exhibit a serious, capable persona. I still vividly call to mind the time (probably around 6 years old) when a friend’s dad argued with me there my hair color, speaking in a patronizing tone like I didn’t understand what I was talking about. Or the time a woman sitting next to me on the regular spoke in a baby voice asking if it was my first time flying, and I rigidly set her straight, explaining that I’d flown many times before, acknowledgement you very much.

So why, if I’ve hated looking young so for long, does this consummation feel so . . . earth-shattering? Isn’t looking my age and the connotations that come with it — appearing matured, intelligent, and successful — what I’ve always wanted?

Up until this inapt, I hadn’t really felt much different in my 30s. I’ve been with my conserve for almost 10 years and married for five, and I’ve had a pretty mellow decade. My conviction of a weekend well spent for most of my 20s has involved hiding away with a nobility book; a nice, quiet dinner out; and Netflix and chilling . . . in the most denotative sense. So besides spotting a few gray hairs, this is the first spell the reality of being in my 30s has really hit me.

And THAT is probably why this new revelation is so frightful. Getting older is all fun and games until you look in the mirror — like, at the end of the day look in the mirror — and see an actual 30-something staring back at you. Not that anorectic, braces-wielding high schooler; or that bright-eyed, tanned college schoolchild; or that 20-something with wild, long hair. But a grown-up, who has her sh*t myriad or less together but also has a few laugh lines and bags under her observes.

So cheers to this next phase of feeling secure in my life and relationships, press a great career that I love, being with a partner who loves me, and, robust, looking my age.

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