There are a lot of bad cultural narratives hovering in the zeitgeist that make women feel they’re past their prime. One is that being over 40 means you’re no longer desirable. Another is that divorce in midlife dooms you to a life of quiet despair. Karen, 56, proves that neither scenario is inevitable. Read on for her story.
I’m 56 years old and divorced after a long marriage. My life exploded and I lost my marriage, my home, and any thought of financial security. The upside is that crawling away from that wreckage into a new life made my stress just melt away, along with 25 pounds! The confidence I gained by finding a career and the means to support my three children seeped into everything I did, and I felt happy for the first time in a long time. And the woman who had never exercised or been athletic now enjoys kickboxing, weightlifting, and yoga. My goal is to become stronger and stronger, for myself and my kids.
My body is not perfect (no matter how much weight I’ve lost, I’ll never have a small waist again), but it’s strong and healthy. Strength and resilience are the examples I want to show my daughters.
I was inspired to buy a bikini and take this photo after I read an article in the Huffington Post about a woman over 50 who started taking sexy photos of herself in the mirror, wearing her husband’s shirt. I loved reading how empowered she felt doing that, and I thought, maybe I could be as brave. I don’t like talking about what happened to me a few years ago, I’d much rather talk about what’s ahead — and I know it will be fabulous.