There are several major turning points in our life such as when we pass from child to teen; from teen to young adult; from adult to senior. In addition, there have been spiritual turning points for me. The most significant turning point was reaching that age when we no longer understand the music of the younger crowd; when we think that the young dress odd; when we look in the mirror and we do not recognize the face looking back.
There was a time when I thought reaching a certain age was an event not to be celebrated. However, now that I am officially in the 'senior' category, there is an overwhelming peace that comes with it.
In Neolithic times the Crone stage was a time of mastery. Crone women were the tribal matriarchs. Their heightened awareness of human nature yielded great insight and they were the source of wise counsel for important decisions.
In our society, ageing is met with denial and condemnation. Many industries exist to support our obsession with looking forever young. Plastic surgery has become almost expected once the first wrinkle arrives to mark the face. Age related medical procedures reinforce the notion that looking old is beyond undesirable.
Once we enter the Crone stage of life, we re-visit our body image issues. At every turn we are reminded of what is considered beautiful; in magazines, on runways and television and movies. We look in the mirror and do not recognize what we see. We see wrinkles and sagging flesh. But in those wrinkles, we can also see kindness, and a gentleness and beauty that radiates from within. We see years of living life the way it should be lived; diving in to the good and the bad moments and coming through with dignity and wisdom.
Many modern women have consciously chosen to reject the negative images of aging and to reclaim their rightful role as esteemed elders. These ladies are stepping into the Crone stage of life with joy and dignity. No matter where you are in your process, embrace it, embrace yourself, love your process. It is yours and yours alone. And, there is no greater gift than life, at every stage.
She came from long unquestioned places where metallic glare
and smell of asphalt baste the skin to darkness
and whiten the opened eye.
The bones beneath the skin form sharp angles
where once there were soft curves.
She reaches up to touch her cheek,
wondering if a touch of blush here or there
would make her look more presentable.
It all seems so distant.
She seems like water,
whose surface has been disturbed.
She sees her reflection,
distorted; ripples on the surface.
You can no longer see beneath the surface.
She closes her eyes to the image that she sees.
In her blindness, the ripples pass
and once again she becomes water.