Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Loving whatever size you have and aging gracefully

198 pounds
Since I wrote about women who don't have a lot up top in my last post, today I want to write about women who do have something upstairs.

I once heard Madonna say that when you're in your twenties, your breasts stand at attention, when you're in your thirties, they start to sag a little, and when in your forties, they are hanging pretty low.

In general I would agree with this assessment, but what I take issue with is the implication that this is a bad thing. Sure, when I was in my teens and twenties, the girls were pretty perky, standing proud every day, but they were also not quite big enough to offer me any real cleavage, which was for all practical purposes nonexistent. But now, twenty years later, I'm all about the cleavage.

Which raises the question, which is better—perky breasts or ones that give you good cleavage?

If you ask me, the answer is both. When they were perky, I loved that about my body, but now that I have cleavage, I love that too—possibly even more.

And maybe that's because we're not supposed to look—or be—the same as we age. I wouldn't give up my cleavage for anything right now—even my former perkiness—and when I see middle-aged woman who have breast implants that look like they could take someone's eye out, I think it looks not only fake but ridiculous.

During a recent trip to visit family, I had the pleasure of seeing Solitary Man, an independent film about a divorced couple played by Susan Sarandon and Michael Douglas. In one scene, Douglas' character visits Sarandon's and finds her in a low-cut top that perfectly shows off her cleavage. I have to say that Sarandon looked amazing. But more than anything, I loved that—at the age of sixty-three—she was still working it. And why shouldn't she?

Dave and I saw that movie with my mother, and I wondered then why Mom almost never shows off her assets, which are plentiful. I think it's because we're taught that after a certain age—possibly after childbearing age—women aren't supposed to be sexual creatures.

Well, I think that's a load of crap.

And I'm thrilled that Sarandon is bucking the trend.

The same week we saw that movie, I also spent a good deal of time with my two nieces, who are now becoming very curious about women's bodies. They talk about them constantly and are always launching questions in my direction that I find hard to answer. Maybe because they think they can get more out of their aunt than their parents? Perhaps, but I also know their mother is pretty up front with them about this stuff too.

No, I think that they are just trying to cull information from as many different sources as possible, so they can make up their own minds about this issue. One of the things they taught me is that some women have "sporty" breasts—read small—while others have big "pillows." (Cute, huh?)

But I noticed that they didn't make a connection between body size and breast size. They claim that when they grow up they want to be really skinny but have big pillows, a fact I digested with horror while also taking the opportunity to explain to them that there is usually a direct correlation between body size and breast size and that not very many women get to mix and match, per se.

They seemed to get it, and by the time Dave and I were heading home a week later, they knew how to answer the question, "Which size is best?"

"Whatever size you have," they said in unison, and I smiled with relief.


  1. I couldn't get my email to work to send you this so I'm leaving it in a comment.

    Levi jeans has gone and created jeans to help curvy women. Which is awesome because I know jean shopping can be a real pain in the neck for many women. There's even a great quote in there that says it's all about "Shape, not size" Which I love because being curvy is not synonymous with fat, and I often see that.

    So, here's the link: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/alltherage/2010/08/levis-launches-new-curve-id-fit-technology-for-women-september-2-2010.html

  2. Thanks so much! I see these jeans will come out Sept. 2nd, so I'll be sure to write about them then.

    thanks again!