14 March 2010

Youth to Age

Pure joy – that is what she is, pure, unadulterated joy and I am abundantly blessed to have her in my life.

My daughter is all that she appears to be, she’s beautiful, funny, extremely intelligent, compassionate and kind to a fault and the wisest soul I have ever met. How I have been chosen to mother her in this lifetime is beyond me but I am eternally grateful that she has given me the opportunity to watch her grow into the beauty she is.

Seeing her grow and become the amazing woman that she is supposed to be makes me proud but also causes me to look deeply at my own walk. Am I continuing to present as a woman that she’ll be proud of in return?

Age is an interesting thing – obvious understatement – and beyond the physical changes there are mental and emotional changes the combination of which creates challenges unexpected, at least by me.

I find my struggles with the aging parts of my physical self often in direct conflict with the slow-to-admit emotional changes. I don’t mentally feel as if I am on the verge of completing my first half-century of life, my body continues to remind me of the milestone but my heart and my mind just don’t feel that “old”.

Perhaps this is the nature of aging in this society, we fight it at every turn and as a single woman at this stage in my life, I think I feel the pull to not “look” or “act” old even stronger. I believe that most women have at least one “difficult” birthday … mine appears to be the nearing 5-0.

At 30 and 40, I was where I had expected to be. I was in committed relationships, I felt secure in my everyday and in the future that was to come. I did not feel the same pressures or fears that I seem to be facing at this time in my life and I know, without doubt, that is because I am alone.

As a woman of a certain age, and one raised in a very traditionally religious manner, I believed that I would only find happiness and security when married. That belief crossed over from the heterosexual life I was forced to live into the lesbian life that I was born to live and when that marriage ended as well, my fears and insecurities surfaced with a vengeance.

My biggest struggle over the past few years has been to acknowledge the strength that has always been mine but hidden behind the “submissive should’s” that ruled my life. And in seeing and accepting that strength, I am finally becoming the woman that I’ve always had the potential to be.

That is the woman that I want my daughter to see, the strong, independent, capably singular woman that knows how to take care of herself and live her life as she chooses not as others expect. So every day, I consciously see myself as that woman, the one that can and is!

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