Do I really look THAT old?

In one of my sister's college classes last year, the teacher was talking about the job market for the students' prospective field and various other topics, and she started out by saying, "I think I can safely say that everyone here is over 30..."

My sister freaked out and politely inserted that she was only 19, which resulted in a moment of stunned silence.  Then everyone had a good laugh over it and class continued.  Later, the family had a chuckle over it at home during dinner.  But it got me thinking.

My sister (now age 20) and myself (a venerable ancient at 25) don't wear the "uniform of youth."  We don't wear scuffed flat sneakers or trendy sandals, torn skinny jeans, and faded tops from trendy stores - we wear nice, pretty clothes that are less likely to go out of style; things that are actually feminine.  We don't wear heavy eye makeup  and funky nail polish, or jingle with cheap jewelry.  Christina actually DOES things with her hair - braids, buns, rolls, you name it.  My hair is short, rather than long, straightened, and bleached blonde.  We wear glasses instead of contacts and enormous sunglasses. 

Even more than what we wear, however, is how we act.  We don't act like flighty teenagers or "hot" babes.  People mistake us for much older adults (I've been having 5-10 years added to estimates of my age since I was in the low teens) because we act like older adults.  We speak politely and professionally, exhibit the ability to think independently, and can handle responsibility.  I was teaching remedial math at a local college by the time I was 23 (my students were a bit shocked when they pried my age out of me) and had my own (albeit small) business at 17.  We seem like the parents of many people our own age, at least at first glance.

This, while perhaps trivial, leads to the centuries-old question of, "What do eligible young men in our age bracket come away thinking, then?"

We both feel that we have a vocation to the married state.  We're both actively "looking" for a potential spouse who will make a solid, dependable, honorable Catholic husband.  But so far no one we've met has exhibited more than passing friendliness.  Perhaps it's because they're just not "the one."  But is this general lack of apparent interest because men our age think we're years older than them?  Do they think we're 30+ just because we don't totter around in spike heels and too-short skirts?  Honestly, how would they ever find out, unless they happen to know someone else our age and pick up on the association?  Or - horror of horrors - ask our ages outright?

I have no intention of turning this into a rant on modern superficiality, I simply wish to state my observations and somewhat random thoughts in case they may be beneficial to others in the same boat.  Kind of like my Catholic Career Woman post a while ago.  Probably the main result of these musings is that I have made an effort to go through my clothes and get rid of a number of items that I feel are dated - things that might look like I purchased them in the 1980s (before I was even born, BTW).  While I'm not going to go out and buy any trendy pieces to replace them, I am going to make the attempt to inject a slightly more youthful flair into items I do make or purchase.  Who knows - it just might help!


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