Gwyneth Paltrow is celebrating her golden year, as the actress turns 50. While many women are reluctant to admit their age, Paltrow is happy to share her story. Not only is she shouting from the rooftop that she’s 50 and proud, but she’s speaking her truth about what aging means to her.
Shining in gold
As she enters her 50th year, Paltrow is full of life and joy. A quick scroll through the actress’ Instagram posts reveals how much she celebrates the milestone. In one photo, she smiles and laughs, frolicking in a field just in a bikini. In another, she reveals even more. On her birthday, September 27, she shared a photo that most people would be too insecure to post, regardless of age. As she celebrated her 50th birthday, Paltrow appeared in her birthday suit, painted head-to-toe gold.
Clearly, Paltrow is embracing this milestone. In reality, she recently shared her thoughts on goop, writing about what turning 50 means to her and what life will be like after 50. As Paltrow reflected on her birthday, she shared, “I strangely have no idea how much time has passed…I understand on some level that life is linear, that I have lived X days so far and I I have more in the basket under my arm than in the field in front of me. But there is something about the sweetness of life that exists deep within me that is unchanged, that will not change.
However, the actress acknowledges that even though time doesn’t seem to have passed, her body bears the proof of a full life. From oven burns to breaking a finger in a window to giving birth to two children, Paltrow identifies the scars that many women have accumulated in life.
As she reflects on those scars, the actress shared how she really feels about aging and what those experiences mean to her: “I accept the marks and sagging skin, the wrinkles I accept my body and let go of the need to be perfect, to look perfect, to defy gravity, to defy logic, to defy humanity.
His biggest regret
Although Paltrow accepts all the evidence of the 50 years she has lived, she has one major regret in her life. “Most regrettable, and so often, I have not spoken my truth to spare a perceived consequence, that hurting someone will tear us both apart,” the actress wrote. “My most enduring mistakes and the mess that comes with them are all down to not standing fully in my truth and talking about it no matter what. Say the words that could have saved seasons of heartache and repercussions.
RELATED: Maria Shriver reflects on the loss of her mother, why aging is a “gift”
Many women can relate to Paltrow’s biggest regret in life. For Paltrow and many Gen X women, pleasing others and not ruffling feathers was simply expected. However, these expectations slowly began to dissipate from cultural norms. In fact, Paltrow quickly goes from writing her biggest regret in life to admitting that even if given the chance, she wouldn’t go back and redo any part of her life.
Focus on what lies ahead
As Paltrow turns 50, the actress is now focusing on the simple things, slowing down and being more honest. It doesn’t focus on the past or what might have been. As she noted, “People often ask, ‘If you could come back to yourself at 21 and give her some advice…” Well, I would know my limit and cling to it more tightly than my life would. And yet, perhaps the most important question is what I will do in the future.
Paltrow is a role model for the number of us women who can approach milestone birthdays. Instead of focusing on what could have been or the regrets we have in life, we should follow his lead. Let’s celebrate life and focus on what’s in front of us.