I have come so far and yet sometimes not at all. I realised this as Jem and I were chatting on the way home from school. We might have bought a house and Jem who has the biggest ears in the world and has heard us discussing finances, wanted to know how much we had offered. I used the opportunity to mention that it was not really necessary for her to know, or to discuss with anyone. And furthermore (you can hear the annoying mom tone can’t you and we wonder why they switch off) at her age there is no need to ask or discuss issues like how much her dad earns, how much I used to earn, how much rent we pay …. Yip, didn’t get past her. She smiled at me, you couldn’t resist mom could you. Shit, I am so bloody transparent. And damn, it does still bother me that they might not see me as the financial contributor I used to be. Damn that it still bothers me. They could care less. But I have got a lot better. I have. When filling in forms I refused to write housewife, or home executive or whatever. My stuff. So I used to write n/a. As in not applicable. Now I write mom. How far have I come.
We were discussing the mid life crisis thing yesterday. And the scary obsession with youth. It is interesting how very few of us escape it. Whether it is that nagging feeling and fear of being anonymous. That slight irritation when only old men glance in your direction these days. Whether it’s the need for the ongoing botox and fillers to try and recapture what was. And the sadness at realising you can’t. Whether its that panic feeling in the middle of the night as you wonder is this it. Or that even more panicked feeling when you see your slightly saggier face looking back at you in the mirror as you wonder, is it too late for me? Is it over? Is it too late to follow my dream? Do I have a dream? Everyone in some way starts to wonder and question and too often regret. Sadly on a physical front earlier and earlier. I am surrounded by exquisite younger women who inject themselves with all sorts of things to try and make themselves look as beautiful as they once did. To me they are even more beautiful today. And all they are doing is losing the expression of themselves. I so understand the fear of ageing, especially it’s toll on our bodies. And on our sense of self worth. And the middle aged are generally ignored by all. So we can become slightly desperate.The middle aged. Shit, how funny is that. I am middle aged. Actually ten years older but the anonymity thing remains. I am filled with questions and wonder and sadness and yes regret but I genuinely find a little more acceptance of myself and a little more appreciation of my wisdom and a stronger sense of self. I love knowing that I have so much more to offer, because of my path, which has led me to here, lined and all. I love being me, saggy bits and all. I want all my friends just to realise how beautiful they are, how lucky they are, how lovely it is to be able to read the expression on their faces, to see them. And how much they have to offer that goes far beyond the physical. How just being them is enough. There is no crisis unless we make it one.