A few days ago, I was attending a work conference and met a fabulous older woman. She had a vibrant smile, a halo of feminine blond curls and was wearing a super-wide leg denim pant with bold flowers and a purple bomber jacket. She was in her late 50’s and she was absolutely captivating. I couldn’t help but admire her bold sense of style and confidence. We chatted for a bit- her personality was every bit as vibrant as her style, and we decided to stay in touch. I have been noticing similar women everywhere nowadays; women notice other women, it’s just something that we all learn to do early on in our lives. Sometimes we give them a once-over with a rather critical eye, sometimes we admire them from afar, and sometimes we try to figure out if we can borrow elements of their style to complement our own.
It may be because I am getting older, but I am also noticing a sentiment that has been voiced in the media about women over 45 being invisible (presumably to men). While this is certainly true in many respects and yes, some men don’t see older women, I say- the hell with it. Why would a fabulous, experienced, self-confident woman even care about this kind of superficial attention? Speaking for myself, I didn’t seek it when I was younger and I can’t care less for it now.
I see older women as role models, trailblazers, someone to look up to and aspire to be their equal “when I grow up”. Here is why:
They are confident without being arrogant- they lived enough to be comfortable in their skin, trust their instincts and stand their ground. An older woman of this tribe is friendly yet selective, approachable yet you feel that you have to work a little to earn and keep her attention. I always imagine Christine Lagarde when I think of this woman
She knows what works for her- her style is distinctive and consistent. It may not please everyone but it makes her feel good when she steals the one last look in the mirror before leaving her house.
She is successful according to her own definition of success- whether she defines it as occupying the C-suite of the fortune 500 company, living near the ocean or having four grandchildren, she is happy where she is.
Her agenda is not focused on pursuing romantic interests (or being embroiled in some sort of romantic drama)- nope, not her cup of tea anymore, thank Goodness. She is quite happy being alone (but not lonely) or sharing morning coffee with her life partner enjoying a morning walk with her pet. She knows that inner happiness is more important than the fleeting attention of someone who may or may not deserve her.
Of course there are plenty of women who are still working on achieving inner happiness, self-confidence or courage to wear what makes them happy or doing whatever makes her happy without trying to please others. But the fabulous older women I meet that have finally arrived to this magical point are truly someone I want to be when I grow up.