Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Shock and awe.......

 “I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.”
Douglas Adams

As a woman who is aging to perfection, steeped in the wine of time, I am still often shocked--well after I thought there was nothing left to rattle me--as well as in awe of the vagaries of the human race. Some things I know.......

  • New jeans with holes up and down the legs, hanging on the rack in the department store, must be an attempt to make us look mindless. 
  • When we were 16, a boy who was even 5 years older was taboo. That chasm was huge and not to be crossed on penalty of irate parents, scandalized neighbors, and the law. By the time we were 25, those 5 years had shrunk and they no longer made much difference. In fact, they added a bit of texture to a relationship. But I bet you didn't know that the same 5 years stretch again at the other end of the age spectrum, causing all kinds of mischief for us in our 60s, 70s, and older. Take my word for it.....it isn't pretty. Because.......
  •   ....men of all ages want younger women. They just do. The problem is that those men hanging onto the right end of the timeline have difficulty keeping up with a woman younger than they are. In many important ways. And men younger than that same woman aren't interested, because--remember?--they want someone younger, too. Where does that leave me? I'll tell you where: women of a certain age who want a full, true relationship are stranded on that timeline, searching both ends of the spectrum. Alone. 
  • Which leads me to this: I should have protected, nurtured, and cherished some of my earlier relationships so I wouldn't be stuck on this darn timeline at all.
  • You can enjoy gospel or religious music without believing a word of it. There's just something joyous about it, isn't there?
  •  I refuse to listen to any song that has the word "chainsaw" in it. It's just not right.
  •  Why do many men refrain from using poor grammar until AFTER you've become invested as a couple? Maybe it's a sign they are truly comfortable with us, their new love. I could stand a little less comfort. Please.
  •  When a man agrees in advance to "talk about things that bother us" as you launch a new relationship, his mouth is merely moving.

That's what I know.....at least for now!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

It's all about "the pick".......

Marriage is not about age; it's about finding the right person.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/s/sophiabush197197.html#LmHtEiAUBA6FbuEb.99
Marriage is not about age; it's about finding the right person.
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/s/sophiabush197197.html#LmHtEiAUBA6FbuEb.99
"Marriage is not about age; it's about finding the right person."
Sophia Bush

Oh, so correct.
I have finally come to understand that it's all about "the pick," whether it's marriage or any other long-term relationship.  Once you have thought about who YOU are and what you want in a partner, the search is on. But it's critical to have that  dialogue with yourself first.
This is where I always made my fatal errors, at least fatal to the longevity of my relationships. (Heck, if you add them all together, I have a great track record!) I am seduced by the fancy trappings of courtship, by the attention..... by the "sell." I should have been more thoughtful about what happens after the shiny gloss fades, who I wanted to stand next to me when the world hands out an unexpected hardship, a job loss, errant children, all of the chaos that slithers under the front door just when we think we have it all.
I realize now that I had no explicit instruction on how to do this. The sad part is that now that I have learned it, the window of opportunity for me to build a long-term, steadfast relationship with a partner has slammed shut. Hard enough to  break the casement in the process. That time can never be swept back up in the dustpan to be used again. Never.
And that IS sad.
I won't ever know the joy of sitting shoulder to shoulder on the couch to look at pictures (yes, real glossy photographs pasted in a scrapbook) of our wedding day or our first car, first pet, first child, first grandchild.
I haven't built a history with someone who stood by me when that health scare struck (the one when I drove myself to the hospital for the biopsy). There is no shared frame of reference for not making the same mistakes with one child that we made with the first one. When one of us loses the ability for physical intimacy, the option of walking away isn't an option at all. The " pick" laid the foundation. And then it's about making the commitment  more than words.
I know two young women who are currently planning their weddings. I wish someone had told me all of this when I was 22, fresh out of college and about to marry. For the first time.
If someone had, maybe I would be getting ready to celebrate my 43rd anniversary.
Instead, I'm back at "the pick."

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Shades of truth......

The opposite of "the truth" is a lie.


The older I get, the more maturity I acquire, the less I believe this.

Life used to be so precise for me. It was either right or it was wrong. White was reflection of all colors, and thus the opposite of black. Simple. Clear cut.

Not so much any more. I now view beautiful shades of pearl and silver, gray and slate, all shouldering their way into the space separating black from white on the spectrum of experience. But life is also overflowing now with paint cans of uncertainty.

It's rather disconcerting. But it forces me to listen more closely, to observe others more humanely. The truth told by one person and contradicted by another might still represent the truth. It doesn't mean that one of them is "lying." I have found that it very often means their personal experiences of the same event were vastly different or that time has molded their truth into a protective cover, one that was necessary for survival.

This happened to me recently. I heard one story, then a completely different version of that "truth." I pondered. I chewed on it. I stewed.  And then I thought, "What difference does it make to me right now, other than the fact that I simply must know 'the truth'?"

Do I really? Does it matter to my life today? Or is it all simply more drama?

Both versions painted shades of the truth for the people it encompassed. It serves some purpose for them. And even if I am one of those people, I have my own truths, too, my own recollections of how things unwrapped themselves within the context of my life. Eternally unique.

“The truth is rarely pure and never simple.” 
Oscar Wilde