None of us can’t stop ourselves from getting older, no matter how hard we try, how strenuously we exercise, how much money we spend on cosmetic surgery, what color we make our hair, or how frequently we Botox. Each year that goes by makes us one year older and steals one year from our life.
But, as they say, getting older is better than the alternative.
Diane Keaton’s wonderful account of her perspective on aging really made me stop and think about my obsession with getting older.
Keaton, who’s wonderful Let’s Just Say it Wasn’t Pretty offers us her perspective on aging, is quick to point out that while she has chosen to forgo cosmetic enhancements as she has aged, she absolutely does not judge others on their decision to nip, tuck, or Botox. It’s all about what makes you feel good and how your life can be important no matter your age.
I think Keaton’s writing is wonderful. Her first book, Then Again, is apparently more autobiographical in nature. In Let’s Just Say it Wasn’t Pretty, she talks a bit about her life and some of the people with whom she has worked in her life, but it’s mostly an account of those things she thinks are important in life.
Keaton is extremely self-depracating and very funny. I couldn’t put the admittedly short book down, and read it in just a day or so. It is filled with stories about her personal life; however, the emphasis of the book is on her perspective about what is important in life.
According to Keaton, it isn’t about what you look like. It isn’t about who you know. It isn’t about how much money you earn or what kind of house you live in or how old you look. She believes some of the most “beautiful” people she has either known personally or known about would not meet the traditional definition of “beautiful.”
Obviously, this viewpoint isn’t anything you haven’t heard before. But I think Keaton’s easy writing about her quirky life brings the point directly home. She talks about listening – really listening – to the world around you. She addresses the need to be able to laugh at yourself and not take life too seriously. Her lack of concern about what others thought about her throughout her adult life is exemplary, especially since she had to develop that lack of concern. As a teenager, she shared all the angst we had as adolescents.
Let’s Just Say it Wasn’t Pretty left me committed to looking at life differently and paying attention to everything. I really have tried stopping occasionally throughout the day to just listen to the sounds. I’ve paid attention to people and have tried smiling at strangers. Most of all, I’ve tried – tried – to stop being so hard on myself about the way I look or worrying about my hair color or how many wrinkles I have.
Keaton would say if you choose to enhance your looks, do so for the right reasons.
I highly recommend her second book, and I am looking forward to reading her first book. I always liked Diane Keaton, and like her even more now.
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