On Ageing

conversations on the art of ageing

In a world that worships unattainable perfection of retouched images and toxic ageist words, it has become a norm for women to be made to feel insecure about the first strand of grey and the first wrinkle. Signs of growing older are often admonished as a step backward rather than forward. Through IKKIVI Zine we wish to change that. We see ageing as a process of becoming more of ourselves, being better equipped to dealing with the world and believing in ‘It is never too late to begin.’ We chatted with six inspiring women who took us through their journeys of growing older and left us with the wisdom of their luscious greys.

To me, it is important that I feel good, confident and balanced, in order to look beautiful outside. When one is young, it is all about aspiring for a perfect figure, groomed hair and made-up face, that is all important. But as you grow, none of it matters as long as you stay true to yourself and let the simplicity and character flow out from within. You learn that beauty of a person is permanent and age has nothing to do with it, it is about how we see ourselves and how we feel inside. It is as exciting to be old as one is young, it is about how you see yourself and the perspective you have.
— Uma Dhananjay

Stripped of all pretensions, I think everybody has an innate raw simple beauty which is truly appealing. And when someone believes in it and lives by it – that , to me, is being beautiful. I think I have always felt that nothing is more important than being yourself.
And that hasn’t changed over the years. The stress and strain of trying to be someone or be like someone is too enormous and intimidating. The strengths, the talents , the attitude and so many other factors are involved a person’s success or accomplishments. So there is no timeline before which a child has to achieve something or become
someone. I particularly like the phrase “ all in good time,” there is a time for everything and it will do us good to bide our time. By and large, we are moulded by society and our parents and what they expect of us . We are restricted to that extent, so it is important to follow your heart. Life is full of choices and we have to make the right choice at the right time.

— Ramaa Murthy

Beauty is the inner self and being beautiful is how you express that inner beauty of yours. Self care and positive well being are very important. Over the years I have learnt that I can make a style look beautiful on me if I am confident in it. I feel age is something that should be embraced with grace and a smile, it is inevitable. It is good to plan ahead but not worth missing out on the present. Enjoy every phase of life. Make the most of your youth, make the most of your older days, they are all equally beautiful if you have the mindset to perceive them like that. I was advised once that it is one’s privilege to look beautiful, those words impacted me and I try my best to always be mindful of that.
— Anupama Mohan

Beauty to me is the person you are and how sensitive you are to the people around you. My learning in life is –Never stop learning – there is always something new to learn. Dostoevsky said – There is no subject so old that something new cannot be said about it. I am 52 – constantly learning in new jobs and roles – from people older and younger, continuing to enrich my learning in life. I would say, enjoy every age, live life to the fullest. Appreciate everything around you. Live and learn and be responsible for all that you do.
— Kausalya Satyakumar

I remember being told how pretty I was as a teenager and in my twenties. But I don’t think I knew who I truly was back then. The intervening decades, with their ups and downs, that have brought me to the present moment, have whittled away at the pretty, outer persona and allowed me track my true self down and it’s this inner person – wickedly funny, wise and compassionate, patient and courageous – who’s truly beautiful. I have learnt that no job, no relationship, and no institution is going to collapse without you – life will go on just fine should you choose to step down or leave. If you really take a look at it, societally dictated deadlines are so arbitrary – someone who’s most probably dead (pardon the pun) and long gone by now decided that this particular goal has to be attained by this particular time! Find the courage of your conviction in staying true to your desires. Dig deep inside and find the courage to self-advocate, saying “yes” only when you really mean “yes” and a resounding “no” when you mean “no”. When you are finally so grounded and both your external persona and authentic inner self are in alignment, then the beauty and grace of your true essence will shine through!  
— Maya Ramamurthy

Beauty is your persona, that you put out to the world, being beautiful is to have an attitude and trust in the essence of who you really are. Earlier, beauty was just things that seemed pleasing from the external and more influenced by people around you. However, growing up lets us see more beauty revealing itself, as we drop judgments in many other forms. My age has taught me the essence of balance, between holding on and letting go. Sometimes we need to hold on, so that we can learn to come of our own, before we have the strength to let go. The advice I’d give to all the young ones out there is to forget about growing older – jump into your youth fearlessly and discover your potential, ignoring the external voices that hold you back. 
— Sanju Dinesh

— Photography by RHEA GUPTE
— Produced by IKKIVI ZINE —