Nip and Tuck, What the…

June 16, 2008, by Connie Stetson

Nip and Tuck, What the… (insert rhyming word here)??

In an effort to be open, I’ve conducted an unofficial survey amongst others of my kind: middle-income, middle-aged Boomers, both men and women, on the subject of discretionary cosmetic surgery. Interestingly, I seem to hold a minority opinion (I’m agin’ it), and the subject is fraught. If I come out and say how I really feel, I risk being accused of being judgmental. If I don’t say how I REALLY feel; well…then I’m just mental.

I do want to go on record and out myself. I’m not a natural gal. I take makeup backpacking, for Pete’s sake. I shave, pluck, dye, exfoliate, moisturize, and will perform any number of rituals to hold back time and I don’t even want to guess as to the amount of money I’ve spent over the years. One of the best things I’ve ever had done is permanent eyeliner, and I just love whitening my teeth. Really. But, I draw the line at the knife.

I find it so ironic that the generation that has reaped the benefits of women’s lib, and embraced meditation, inner peace, Deepak Chopra, Dr. Phil and read all those self-help books, is the same generation that thinks that a little “procedure” will make them feel better about themselves. The quote kids, is “no one gets out alive”, not no one gets out “unlined”.

Does anyone remember that Twilight Zone episode where this girl is being pressured to have plastic surgery so she’ll be pretty and she doesn’t want it, she’s afraid she’ll lose her identity? Well, then she’s forced into it and when she comes to, she’s so happy cause now she looks like everyone else?? Anyone remember that?

Here’s how it shakes out for me when I look into the not-so-distant future. I want my health, vitality, curiosity, genes and my sense of humor to shape how I appear. I hope that at sixty, seventy and beyond, what jumps out at people is not that you can bounce a quarter off my forehead, but still bounce an idea off my brain.

One cannot aspire to be young, ya know? You can aspire to be fit, to know more, to be kinder, to be more engaged and more engaging. Youth is the concession prize for having no wisdom and being wise is the concession for getting old. Or maybe I’m just suffering from “CheraJoanaphobia.” Hmmm….

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6 Responses to “Nip and Tuck, What the…”

  1. Wrinkle Waffler Says:

    I really waffle on the idea of cosmetic surgery. I find it very odd that there are many women these days that are frozen in time. I’m not talking about the scary bad plastic surgery victims (have you seen Prescilla Presley?) but just women whose faces are smooth and tight with little character or expression. But then there are those who just have a relaxed and rested look and no jowls to speak of. I’ve earned my lines, but can I learn to love them? Our society and the media have taught me otherwise.

  2. cfinhollywood Says:

    I guess the way I feel about it is if someone wants to do it (for whatever reason), then go for it. For those who end up looking perpetually surprised, well, don’t get pissed if people stare and smirk behind your back. Get used to the idea that you will provide people with endless reasons to chuckle. Hey, it could be worse. As for me, all I can say is growing old ain’t for the meek. Seeing my face an skin disintegrate before my very eyes is really distressing sometimes. But I hope to God that I’ll never succumb to the knife. I’ve never seriously considered it; and if I ever do, somebody out there, please stop me!

  3. TV land fan Says:

    I DO remember that Twilight Zone episode. Weren’t they all pig faces at the end? I guess beauty is in the eyes of the masses, but luckily, the masses are more diverse now, so it’s easier to “fit in” or be unique, depending on how you look at it. Knife? Me? No way! Just glad I don’t live in L.A.!

  4. Gail Dreifus Says:

    I have thought about this subject and i am in agreement with Connie-(after all I took her seminar) but i also talked to my best friend who is a medical malpractice lawyer and she has horror stories beyond the Twilight Zone. So ……I think I will take Bob Marley’s que and don’t worry be happy, wrinkles and all!

  5. nan Says:

    I loved that Twilight Zone episode. Funny that it was made so long ago..

    Along the same lines (sort of), I was thinking the other day that we spend so much money on stuff that gets washed down the drain. I was walking through Walgreens and looking at all the stuff that promises to make me look younger/cuter/thinner and smell better. Is it really worth the $$ when it goes down the drain?
    “I want my health, vitality, curiosity, genes and my sense of humor to shape how I appear.” My sentiments exactly, Connie.

  6. Lori Oliver-Tierney Says:

    I don’t want to go on the record as saying “never” because as a mom I have had to eat those words too many times. At this point (unless they really do get some magic cream that you can just put on) my plans are to age as gracefully as possible and that is hard in this day and age. I just visited with a woman in Mexico who swears by the powers of botox. My husbands comment was she looks like her face has been punched. I try to be kinder and say she just looks surprised. She also hides herself under huge sunglasses and a large hat and has more cosmetics in her luggage than clothes. She tells me she never swims and always wears black because it makes her look younger. I just feel sad for her. I think the movie that sums it up for me perfectly is “Death Becomes Her” starring Goldie Hawn. We are so busy worrying about our physical selves we sometimes forget our inner selves. I am on a journey to see my mother who is “dying” of cancer and I know the parts I will remember about her are her strength of character and her inner beauty, cancer has not taken that, but botox plastic surgery etc. could not have stopped the demise of her body. I guess what I really believe is that age is a gift and we should not take it for granted and health is an added bonus so live long, laugh much and live as if there is heaven on earth. I plan to spend my 55th birthday backpacking in The Sierra wilderness. Why? Because I am still lucky enough to have the health to do it. Yes, I will wear sunscreen, a hat and a knee brace but I will be there and that is what matters.

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