Sunday, April 6, 2014

Pin-up at 40

I turned forty this year.  It’s a big milestone, and the first one that really makes me feel different.  New medical tests are required, and my body is doing weird things.  Hot flashes.  My old wrist injury aching when it’s going to rain.  Random eyebrow hairs turning silver, growing extra long, and spronging out from my face, like “Look at me!  I’m a gray eyebrow hair! Helllooooooo!! Do you see me?”

I know how that shining, fabulous eyebrow hair feels.  Sometimes you just want to be seen.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve begun to slip quietly under a cloak of invisibility.  I find myself thinking often of that scene from Six Feet Under, in which Kathy Bates teaches Frances Conroy to shoplift, explaining that since they’re invisible as older women anyway, they might as well get free stuff. 

When I’m in my mom uniform, jeans and a basic top, minimal makeup, at the grocery store or the waiting area at dance class, I can feel the slide of eyes.  An older, plus size suburban mom.  Utterly invisible.

The blue hair helps a little.  A genuine smile helps sometimes too.  But I still feel the slide into invisibility.  Middle-aged.  Overweight.  Nothing to see here.

But I’m not gonna go quietly.

I’m 40!  Do you know how freeing that is?  I am the person I’m going to be.  This is me.  Not to say I can’t reinvent myself in another twenty years.  I totally can.  But pretty much, I am who I am, and I know myself pretty well.  This is me.  Crazy, irreverent, boozy, loving, maternal, potty-mouthed, smart, and sexy as hell. 

I get to just be who I am.  Blue hair.  Whiskey blog.  Obsessed with corsets.  I'm forty.  I get to just be that. 

And I don’t have to be invisible if I don’t want to be. 

So here I am.  Forty.  Overweight.  Mom of twins.  Doing pin-up. Because beauty isn’t a number.  It’s not an age or a dress size or a number on the scale.  It doesn’t come from anyone else’s approval.  It comes from inside. 

And I will not go quietly.  Oh, hell to the no.

All photos are by the amazing, extraordinary Rebecca Palmer of Lifescapes Photography.  Also known as best sister ever.  


  1. Fantastic! I love them! Looks like you had a lot of fun :)

  2. Oh, hell to the no. Loved all your sass and sparkle. Great fun.

  3. Not sure if you know this or not, but YOU'RE MY FUCKING HERO. And these pics just prove it. I'ma share this, and then again next year when I turn 40. Not far behind ya, babe. But you are rockin' it much better than I am. I needs to make me some changes -- and find me a corset cuz DZANG! #HAWT

    1. Andi-Roo! Do it! It's so incredibly fun! Happy to give corset recommendations if you need them. I have said before that two things I am an expert on are whiskey and corsets. (The first time I said that, the person I was talking to suggested that as the title of my memoir. Haha.)

  4. HONEY HONEY HONEY! You did it again... Luscious, Liquid, Lovely, Just wonderful. Something to admire...and love and Laugh out loud~
    Love you Pammie,
    You go girl!

  5. -as a photographer who just delved into pin up and boudoir photography, i applaud you. beauty is not age nor size.....but comes from within. i believe pin up/boudoir photography helps women feel more sexy about themselves. :) You're lovely. Stay positive. Keep enjoying life