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Being an old woman is seen as a particular misfortune, rather than the blessing that it can be. In an environment where fear-based attitudes toward old age are so pervasive, it is easy to internalize them without realizing it.

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Some women resist these negative stereotypes by clinging to youth, investing in expensive products and procedures that promise to erase, or at least hide, the visible signs of aging. But the subtext is hardly a compliment: to be her age is bad.

Sadly, the belief that later life is necessarily a time of debilitating decline usually goes hand in hand with a lack of health-promoting behaviors. Thus, many of us help bring to pass the very losses we dread.

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Thankfully, resistance and resignation are not the only ways to approach growing older, and there is mounting evidence that the dread of aging is more rooted in fear and fallacy than in fact. Another more encouraging version of the story of old is gaining momentum, one that acknowledges the losses of later life but also celebrates its gifts and graces. It is also illustrated by little-known folktales from around the world that depict the old woman as a multifaceted and valuable character — a far cry from the stories of wicked witches and ugly hags that most of us heard as children.

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And a growing body of research is confirming this heartening view of later life and yielding some surprising findings:. Rare is the woman of any age who looks forward to growing old, but the need for good news about the winter of life is especially pressing in middle adulthood. The growing number of people over sixty-five represents an enormous potential resource for the human family, which desperately needs the steady, ingenious, compassionate wisdom of its grandmothers and grandfathers. I hope that men and younger readers will find value here as well. If you are a young woman or one just entering midlife, may you be inspired to age in your own way, unencumbered by the constrictions of ageist stereotypes.

Almost all of the research and theories of aging included here apply to men as well, unless otherwise specified. Regardless of age and gender, I invite you at least to peek through the keyhole of the imposing door marked OLD AGE and see for yourself what might lie on the other side.

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Listen to the words of elders, ponder the scientific evidence, allow the stories of the old ones to permeate your soul, and give winter a chance to bless you with her graces. However you travel through these pages, may you find encouragement and nourishment. May you come to appreciate the graces of winter in yourself and in others and dare to share your unique version of them with the world. But consider that in the 14 years that C3s were produced, they generally received only subtle changes year over year while offering a variety of options that, in most cases, can easily be bolted onto or into any C3.

Keep the resto-modification tasteful and you have a subtly modified car that, while unique, is easily desirable to others when it comes time to resell. Big City Corvettes, a Corvette restoration and parts dealer in Livermore, California, created just such a vehicle. We dropped in a warmed-up V-8 and topped it with factory aluminum valve covers and a functional cowl-induction dual-snorkel air cleaner and backed it with a Tremec five-speed manual. We then placed a highly aerodynamic body on the upgraded frame, made it a convertible, and added factory side pipes.

Why the C3 Corvette’s bad rap is beginning to fade

At first glance it looks factory, but when you get inside and head down the road, and you realize this is something way better. They are high tech, with an interior that is aircraft inspired, and they are agile and fast. It is easy to see why C3s hold their value and are growing in popularity.