Recently a 17-year-old pulled a knife on a 40-year-old man on a train in Melbourne. A witness in one newspaper story referred to the 40-year-old man as an ‘old man’, saying she was surprised he was able to overcome his attacker.
Crikey – an old man? He’s the same age as me. I’m not surprised to hear he restrained the younger whippersnapper as most 17-year-old boys/men are as skinny as flynn compared with grown men, unless they’ve been working out or their voice broke at 10.
I am fitter, stronger and healthier now (thanks to my yoga teacher and Chinese doctor) than I was at 25 when I drank more, smoked and ate takeaways.
Apparently I also look younger. Many people say I look around 30 – how weird is that? It is even weirder given that my defunct ovaries have put me into early menopause. This is also the case of a friend of mine who also has premature ovarian failure (POF). She is in her late 30s but looks like she’s about 25. Our hair is its natural colour, we have minimal wrinkles and our jowls still firm and uplifted. You would think the opposite would happen…
But to start with being diagnosed with POF made me feel like an old, old woman. I grieved for the loss of my periods and my youth. All the pictures of women on menopausal sales products or educational material looked like they were 65+. At the bone density testing place not a woman under 75 was to be seen. I couldn’t see anyone going through menopause who looked like me.
As POFers are in the minority it makes sense to depict menopausal women as older. But coming to terms with my condition has made me hyper-aware of the perceived age of everyone around us – whether they be young men and women, or much older men and women.
It may sound like I’m getting hung up on age but when your ovaries stop working miles ahead of everyone else’s you tend to feel a little sensitive about your age.
Are there any readers out there with POF who also look way younger than their years? Perhaps all the energy that is usually diverted into ripening our ovaries is instead being sent to our faces and decolletages?