Women of a certain age have brushed away tears with their hands — hands that were once held and warmed by their husbands, who couldn’t cry and died of heart attacks.
I never expected to be such a poor sport for aging, because I never expected to become old, but I am not clutching it with high-pitched sighs and smiles that tell of pain forgotten.
My age spots, menopause and arthritic hormones are in a fragile package.
Many times, during this examination of women at a certain age and the world she lives in, I’ve asked myself: who cares?
The only reason that I’m adding words to this subject is to clear away what I consider to be a thicket of misconception, if not timidities. George Bernard Shaw said that it’s a pity, that youth in wasted on the young.
This is untrue! Youth is wasted on the old, if all they do is pine away to be young again. By embracing the loss of youth, I’ve transcended my anxieties and the dread of growing ancient.
I do not speak of growing old gently nor gracefully, but with a wonderful and outrageous sense of style. I will wrap a scarf around my neck to hide a turkeys neck, flutter my bosom with bold Swarovski beads that will blind an eagle’s gaze.
Swathed in glitz and glamor, I’ll be sweating glitters.
My voice will be lighter and I will dress myself in Christian Dior, Valentino and Oscar de la Renta.
I will defy the grave with bright colors and perfume (guaranteed to wake the dead and kill the living), tending time which is more fragile than youth.
I will be unduly dignified, having earned the right to dress and sing and dance in any way that I please. I could even take up belly dancing, and unlock all my inhibitions.
Our identities are not tied to our age. We’re never our own age.
As we come to terms with aging, we create our identities.
Now, I can demand the freedom to take life less seriously. I will flaunt my gray hair, wrinkles , double chin and falling womb– accepting that beyond age, lies a gentler joy and peace that sanctifies old age.
I shall stop reflecting on such things, like the nature of melancholy or how sickness could be caused by a state of mind.
I shall transfer my affections to more attainable men and forego men who are out of range like Julius Caesar, Hamlet, Henry V and Clint Eastwood.
Perhaps, I shall throw away the books, along with self-restraint. But in no time will I throw away a sense of fierce independence, as a human being and the desire to attain distinction in terms of mind, spirit and expression — and its existing horizons.
I am not going to be worried of what others think of me, or by what standard of morality I am judged. I will not stand the gaff or independence for long.
You want to be young? But you can’t be older is what we all get.
By the time a woman is 70, she is either wanted as a woman of 70 or not really wanted at all.
She doesn’t have to fool anyone and accept the fact that competing with women (who are younger than she is) over anything is not only degrading, but futile.
The affection I now receive is for me, the real me. This was worth waiting for.
E-mail Mylah at firstname.lastname@example.org