February is the month for sweethearts and chocolates, and it’s also my birthday month. Vanity runs deep in our family. My grandmother was still applying Pond’s Cold Cream to her face nightly when she was in her 90s, and even my Mother’s closest friends don’t know how old she is. The only way I know is if I sneak a peek at her driver’s license. When I say I am fighting the signs of aging, I mean I am fighting it with a passion and have no shame in the fact that my passion is driven by vanity. Recently, as I scrolled through my Facebook newsfeed, I came across an advertisement for a cream that can be applied to the entire body like a lotion. It claimed to instantly cover up blemishes such as spider veins on legs and dark spots left from foolishly worshipping the sun in younger years. The ad depicted a 30-something year old woman applying the lotion and instantly, her skin looked like a Photoshop filter had been used. This very much appealed to my vanity and my finger hovered over the “shop now” button. Just as I was about to click it, a little voice inside my head asked, “What are you doing?” I argued with the little voice for a moment but then realized it was right; enough was enough. I mean, was I going to apply this lotion for the rest of my life just to have the appearance of flawless skin?
Youthful looks are fleeting. Time has a way of leaving its mark on us, inside and out. And while my vanity tells me to buy the lotion to cover the physical signs of the aging process, my mind acknowledges that I am no longer 30-something, and points out I am wiser and more comfortable in who I am now than I was then. With that wisdom and confidence comes an ease in the pressure to be perfect, and brings with it room to enjoy life and appreciate every minute that is given. Wisdom and confidence can be as liberating as satisfying our vanity. It helps us realize what is truly important, and what is just a blip on the radar in the big picture. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not giving up my makeup and false eyelashes, but I will pass on the cover up lotion.