Maiden, Mother, Crone…
Zoe and I attended a football game last Sunday for the opening season of the Texans. As I sat, actually watching the game and understanding most of the plays, I wondered to myself when did this happen. I love to watch people and wonder about their lives. It’s part of my story building exercise, to imagine a story around what I perceive as their character. I noticed several lovely young girls, beside the cheerleaders, that were scattered throughout our section, but I noticed one in particular, who chose to run up the stairs with her boyfriend several times throughout the game. She had illustrious long, strawberry colored hair with an athletic, yoga body and model face. I remembered back to a time when I attended football games and hadn’t a clue or care about the game. All I cared about was the attention of the opposite sex and the energy of the excitement. I was a model back in then…
That being said, I should also mention I saw many women my senior put together so posh and still very beautiful. I do not know if I could carry off such elegance. I have a penchant for Four Seasons atmosphere, yet I like to wear sweat pants.
This whole thought pattern had my mind reeling. What is my place in society? We only seem to recognize the maiden, mother or crone and the latter is sorely overlooked, ignored or forgotten. I am no longer a maiden and no longer yearn to be. Days and nights worrying about my appearance… my self worth, sadly enough, determined by what others thought of my beauty, not my mind… and I actually had one.
By choice, I do not have children. Nor am I the age I would consider having them, so I do not fall in the mother category. Where does that leave women who are not yet silver, with wind still in their sails. My skin may have lost the dewy freshness of youth, but it is not withered and frail. I may be wise from years of living, but I still have much to learn… much to contribute. I was late in learning we are the sum total of our experiences, and beauty is much more than skin deep. I know that now. I wanted to tell the strawberry haired girl to run home and find her true passion and start building her life now! To forget about her beauty, for it will one day fade, and she will be overlooked and ignored for her outer shell. If I could have back all the wasted hours of my youth, I would…
Here is the crux of the matter. Life is a sum total of experiences, and as a writer I know how the lovely girl felt by her expression, as she ran the steps with her boyfriend, who radiated pride beside her. I knew the feeling because I too had felt the same in my youth… beautiful and young, or at least I thought I was pretty. There is a comfort that comes with age… letting go of the petty things that tether us to a superficial existence. I did enjoy my beautiful youth and gained knowledge from the experience. I use it to create characters in my books and help breathe life into the pages I write. I feel free at my age to wear whatever, go wherever, and write without a care for what the world thinks. I shall define this stage as freedom.
It is experience that helps us to the next stage of life, and it is my cumulative life choices that will walk with me though this new era. I do not worry. I share it with so many women… I shall not be alone.
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