The Land of the Invisible… Really?
When I was a young person struggling in the world of fashion design, I use to visit the hippie head shops of Atlanta to get my designs on display and do window display for what we called the “head shops and boutiques”. I met some of the most fascinating older women. Beautiful silver haired divas with flowing garments and lilting voices. They were so strong and confident. I use to think…”I want to be an old hippie like them.” They offered so much wisdom on my quests at that time.
We all need to find mentors who are leaps and bounds ahead of us in the wisdom department. They are all around, but often missed because we so often do not recognize antiques as treasures. Life is much less domineering if we don’t have to find our path alone. If we are making our own maps through the Universe, it can be both a rocky and exciting trip, but help is better.
Older women get more confident but often become invisible at age 40 in our Western culture. So many of us see it as a relief, actually. No more pressure to look like something we are not. We become non-existent and in that is some form of freedom. However, I’ve always said I’d like to be a grandmother like Tina Turner in the song “Proud Mary” ….”I never do anything nice and easy!” The Proud Mary keeps on turning…” I welcomed my wrinkles as a badge of courage and fortitude. I honor aging gracefully and invisibility is not always a bad thing. You get to see more when you are invisible. Don’t get me wrong. The old hippie in me can still take over a room and have a party or anarchy going in ten minutes, if I choose.
However, with age should come wisdom and I honor my life’s journey and where it has brought me. I have forty-two years of corporate savvy under my belt and fourteen years of fashion design and retailing. Years of free coaching skills to offer and only the most astute students and young entrepreneurs ask for my help. I have one former student that wants me to open his law office when he graduates from Law School and run his campaign for governor when I’m eighty. I asked him if he realized how mean I’d likely be by then. He said… “I know that’s why I need you.” I will not go gently into obscurity. I plan to dance like no one is watching until I cannot dance anymore.
I say all that to tell you this. I can think of a number of other wise women who are also carrying on, on their own ground. I, you, we need to find them, and feel inspired by them. It is the wisdom of the grandmothers in our society that made our cultures strong and upstanding; as much as any warrior or leader. Homo-Sapient evolved to have older formidable women. Ever ask why we have women who survive long after their fertile years? An experienced kick-ass, older woman can improve the genetic odds for her kinship by quite a margin. We will not be invisible.
Let’s find the grandmothers and divas who spark our society behind the scenes. Let’s use their wisdom to our advantage. We, the grandmothers, do not give a rat’s ass about social convention. We live on our own terms and are willing to share with others our wisdom of the ages. Think us invisible at your own peril. Namaste, The Queen Cronista.