The only good thing about being forced to lie around in bed is the amount of books I read. The pain made it hard to sleep so I would read until I nodded off for a few hours, waking up with my face marking my page. I basically read old favourites and found quite a few that I no longer thought were as good as I remembered. One of them was “To the Hilt” by Dick Francis and in one chapter I underlined a few sentences that struck me as relevant to my life at this time.
I didn’t think of blogging about them, I just copied them into my written journal but a comment made on a post last week changed my mind.
The commenter was astounded that I was a grandmother, thinking that I was late thirtyish or so.
Mind you, a young grandmother, I married early, son also married early so no shawls and lavender yet.
The narrator in this book was an artist and the woman he was speaking about was a feisty Scottish lady of uncertain age.
“………..I thought how much the outward appearance of age could colour one’s expectation of a person’s character.”
“………..I strongly sensed a singular individual powerful entity that might have intensified with time, not faded. We were dealing with that inner woman, and should not forget it.”
“……….Persistance of the spirit inside the transient flesh”
“……….While the outer shell aged, the inner spirit might not.”
Before I started my blog, I commented at a few places and was always careful to not reveal gender or age because of that first line, especially as those first comments were made at the blogs of much younger writers.
I was careful because I have been on the receiving end of another prejudice, the “she’s fat, she must be stupid” so I wasn’t keen to have “she’s old, what’s she doing here commenting”. Old, fat and stupid was a bit too much for this sensitive soul.
To take the narrator’s words though, I am aware that inside I am a powerful entity and my spirit has persisted through many traumas, both physically and mentally. I have earned my age. I should value the experience that has been crammed into my age. I am also aware that society values the appearance of youth a lot more than the experience of age.
The outer shell does age, although I must thank Barista for saying that I had worn well, but my inner spirit is far from old. The inner spirit keeps the outer shell going, the inner spirit that is fuelled by humour and a few drams of vitriol. My inner woman really has intensified with time. I have left behind the friends whose inner spirits have worn as much as their outer shells and I have no regrets. I have become the wise woman of a tribe of one and I intend to keep going with this “singular individual powerful entity”.
The inner spirit still likes pretty men and chocolate, I’m not giving them up either.