A Journey of Self-Discovery: Embracing Midlife Crisis with French Grace

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By Christina

One day you wake up noticing there is a wrinkle on your face that wasn’t there yesterday, and you know it isn’t a pillow crease cause it’s deep, and not red. On the same day, you see a few white hairs standing at salute on top of your head. It is then perhaps that your midlife crisis washes over you. 

Maybe it doesn’t have on that day. Perhaps it happens one day as you’re getting out of bed and you’re sore, though you don’t remember working out the day before. Or you’re realizing just how young people are around you. So, you take action. You start a self-care routine and a whole-body routine. Or you visit the doctor for the Botox injections you’ve avoided for years. 

Although, maybe you canceled that appointment and decided to take a look within, after all, a self-discovery journey doesn’t involve needles. 

To feel better about yourself, you try new makeup trends, not thinking about how more powder and concealer make you look almost like a walking ghost. 

Perhaps you wonder why you can’t do your makeup like Kim Kardashian despite using the same products as her. And your eyeliner looks as though you’re eyes are drooping, I mean how hard can it be to apply eyeliner? You’ve done it for years so why the issues now? 

That’s ok, cause I do the same. 

Or perhaps you decide you need a scenery change, like say moving to the country. I’ve read a ton of blog posts, articles and books where people move clear across the country or the world just to deal with their midlife crisis. You don’t have to do that, just read or rent Under the Tuscan Sun or Eat, Pray, Love. (No, that is not why I moved to France)

While all that sounds pretty tame, you might be thinking that none of that could lead to a midlife crisis. For you, that could be true. 

However, if you’re finding yourself lost in popular culture-who is the new it girl or the hot it boy in Hollywood.  Or maybe you have no idea who Dua Lipa or Billy Ellish is. All of that can make you feel a little overwhelmed with the knowledge that things are passing you by. Which in turn causes you to freak out. Or at least that is what happened to me. 

A midlife crisis in women doesn’t have to be a cause for alarm. It is completely normal and the best news is it’s manageable. 

In this post, I’m going to talk about what a midlife crisis is for women, the signs of a midlife crisis, and how you can handle it with French grace. 

In this article

  • What is a midlife Crisis for women? 
  • What are the symptoms of a midlife crisis
  • how to copy with a midlife crisis
  • in the end
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    What is a midlife crisis for a woman?

    As with everything that happens to our bodies, each person’s midlife experience can vary from person to person. However, the main definition of a midlife crisis is a period of emotional turmoil in what is considered middle age. A midlife crisis typically can occur between 40-60 years of age. However, many feel the strain of midlife crisis as early as 35. As we grow and evolve, we tend to cling to things that bring us incredible joy, such as youth and fear of getting older.

    In a nutshell, you realize the impending mortality and you begin to wonder if you’ve accomplished everything you’ve wanted before that day comes.  

     

    Think of the man buying a sports car out of the blue type thing. 

     

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    Journal: Writing my Book

    I love writing. Almost as much as I love researching and creating something magical.  However, lately, I find it difficult to shake myself out of the events I’ve written.  Let me explain.  For instance, I’ve written a scene where some explosion or perhaps a...

    Symptoms

    • Depression/Anxiety 
    • Irritability 
    • Mood swings
    • Sleep disturbance
    • Weight gain/loss
    • Increase indecisiveness
    • Struggling with identity or purpose in life
    • Overwhelmed or dissatisfied 
    • Low motivation
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    grayscale photo of two woman sitting beside the table

    How to cope with a midlife crisis

    According to helpguide.org, there are several things you can do to cope with a midlife crisis.

    Many of them I’ve mentioned before in my Spring Refresh Your Spirit Challenge

     

    The best way to help yourself cope with a midlife crisis is to understand that you are not alone and there are people out there who support you. You don’t need to buy something expensive or shiny! Try these coping mechanisms instead!  

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      Tips to help you cope with your midlife crisis

      • Support groups
      • Journaling
      • Exercise
      • Change Your thinking-Midlife Movement (personalize your own journey)
      • Share with your partner
      • Start something new-pottery, knitting, landscaping. 
      • Check-in with your values
      • Reconnect with yourself. When you’re done here read about Wellness Refresh. 
      • Reconnect with nature. Discover how I found my happiness with gardening. (even though I hate getting dirty.)

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        Other Midlife Crisis Support

        Read books

        I recommend Older, but better but older. By Caroline de Maigret and Sophie Mas. She gives you an insight into how it feels getting older and struggling with it, then learning how to do it with grace. 

         

        While many of us women believe that we are not heard or seen in the medical industry, make your voice be heard. If you are experiencing anything mentioned above write it down in your journey, document how long each thing lasts, and share that with your doctor or therapist. You have the right to be supported and nurtured through your journey. 

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          How French women deal with getting older-with French grace. 

           

          One day as I was walking to the store in Chartres, I noticed an elderly woman walking with her friend. But her age wasn’t the thing I was fixated on. It was her brown beret, and matching fur coat. She also had kitten heels and a wool skirt on. She looked so stylish. So unlike the women of the same age, I’ve seen in the United States. 

          She was not giving up on her fashion simply because she was older. Nor was she looking as though she was giving up. 

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            This brings me to this, How do French women deal with getting older-with French grace? 

            The author of “Older, But Better, But Older”, Caroline de Maigret, says, The Brain tells you (that) you can’t do this or that, not true. Serenity comes with age and knowledge. 

            I learned from other women in France that as you get older you feel very free, there is no pressure to be perfect. On the other end, there is also no pressure of failure. 

            The glaring difference with older women in France that I’ve noticed is they continue to put in the same effort in their appearance as they age. The value of beauty is about accepting who you are and making the most of it every day. 

            Many women do not fight the aging process and they will allow and tolerate a wrinkle or two but they are very strict about maintaining a skincare routine. 

            The skincare regimen that includes the best creams and skincare products. They also maintain regular facials and depilatory services-hair removal. 

            A perfect example of an older woman chic is Bridgitte Macron. At age 70, she is poised, chic and elegant. Dealing with getting older with grace. 

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              In The End

              You know things are not what they used to be when you realize new wrinkles are popping up every week. And that’s ok. 

              Sometimes we manage to go through life changes gracefully and sometimes we go through it kicking and screaming. 

              When we’re young we dream of being older, and until we are older we wish we were younger. 

              Regardless of where you are in your journey of getting older, there is no terrible way of going about it. You are special and you have that extra something. 

              You’re bright, intelligent, and have so much to offer to the world. Going grey is the new fierce hair color, look on Instagram I’m serious. Several women are starting to embrace the color in their late 20’s and 30’s. 

              Take your time to rediscover who you are, enjoy your new stage in life, and go through it your way. Own your insecurities, they are as unique as you are and they are awesome. (love your love handles, your butt, and whatever else you don’t currently like). Do what you want as long as you own it. 

              There is no wrong way of getting older, just your way. 

              Remember nothing is in your head, and if you’re experiencing symptoms you can not handle alone reach out for support. It’s there. 

              Your feelings and symptoms deserve validation, get a doctor that validates you. And enjoy the ride of the new phase in your life. 

              christina q writes
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              Hi, I’m Christina

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              I’m the coffee-addicted creative behind Christina Q. Writes. As a full-time writer and lover of history, I share insights into my crazy wonderful life.  Christina Q. Writes is where I share tips and advice to help you live simply and in the moment, and do it your way. Don’t be afraid to laugh at my mistakes!