“Lying, walking, sitting in this room, she felt herself ripening and coloring.”
-Meridel Le Sueur
We have such a cult of youth in this society that, for a woman, growing older is a terrifying experience. Meridel Le Sueur’s usage of the words “ripening” and “coloring” are very soothing. If I see myself ripening and becoming richer as I grow older, if I see myself developing a more intricate patina, my process of growth takes on a different tone.
We have two big dogs in our household, a seven-year-old Great Dane queen (seven is old for a Great Dane!) and a happy tramp-like German Shepherd about two years old. Although she is busy being a queen, and he is busy growing up, they have the most beautiful, devoted, and caring relationship. He does not seem to mind that she is an “old lady” and has some grey hair. As I watch them, I realize that human beings are probably the only species that worship youth and disdain maturity. Among animals, it just doesn’t seem to matter.
I COULD NOT KNOW what I know today if I weren’t the age I am. I have the continual opportunity to grow.
*from the book, “Meditations for Women Who Do Too Much” by Anne Wilson Schaef. copyright 1990