Don’t reject aging, embrace it!

My mother found her first gray hair at 27. Granted, by the time my mother was 27, she had two young children, but still, I would be pretty ticked if I were going gray before 30. I’m not sure why I would be upset about it, because there’s really nothing wrong with gray hair. (George Clooney rocks it.) Society has taught me to try and ward off the signs of aging no matter what the price. But why? What is wrong with aging?

Some people will go to extremes to avoid aging, and I mean some serious extremes – face-lifts, Botox, implants. The other day I saw a woman on Lincoln Road who had all of the above and more done to her body and she looked horrible. I’m sure she would have been a cute old lady if she would just have let herself age gracefully. Some of the most beautiful women I have seen are older and embrace it.

And that’s precisely what I plan to do. I know I’m still 22 and I plan on looking hot for the next 20 years (make that 30), but when my first gray hair pops up or when my skin starts losing its young, vibrant look, the last thing I will do is go under the knife. With my luck, they’d all be botched procedures anyway, but I don’t see why I need to spend my time and money trying to make myself look young.

Older people have a sense of experience and wisdom to them. I’m looking forward to people assuming I’m intelligent just because I’m old, instead of assuming I’m naive and inexperienced just because I’m young.

Age gracefully, people. Let your hair turn gray. Let your wrinkles and laugh lines give you character. Look forward to the day when you stop getting carded at bars and you can take advantage of the senior citizen discount at restaurants.

Age only has to be apparent on the outside. You are as young as you feel. My dad has a third-degree black belt and goes biking. My mom tap dances. My 67-year-old grandmother climbed a rock wall not too long ago. The day they look in the mirror and say, “I’m old” is the day they will be old and lose their inner youth.

Aging is not a disease. It’s a blessing. Every day we grow older is a new day to meet new people, learn something new and have new adventures. Our college days may seem like the best days of our lives, but this is nothing. We have a couple more decades in us, at least. Make it worthwhile instead of worrying about how you appear on the outside.

Ashley Davidson is a senior majoring in journalism and studio art. She may be contacted at