Tag Archives: life

Invisible League

Like Alice plunging down the rabbit hole, I was suddenly not the fun girl at the party but the dotty auntie figure we humor for a moment before moving on. As older women we are no longer desirable, no longer perceived as anything but taking up space a younger person could put to better use in the job, in the relationship, in life. Age, I now realize, doesn’t creep up, it fells you with changes you didn’t see coming. And it happens at 50. You vanish, replaced by an old and forgettable woman.

This is an excerpt from an article written by Tracy Nesdoly for The Star (see the full article here) about At what age do some women begin to feel invisible? I came across this while looking for random things about age on the internet. One click and I was suddenly bombarded with page after page of written stories about women of a certain age who are invisible and no longer seen as important part of society. The titles are demeaning. Not only for us middle age women but for any woman young or old because whether we like it or not we will be in that position sooner or later. What do you think of: Dating: I’m the Invisible woman,  where the writer calling herself a mere plankton in the food chain of sexuality and the marketplace for relationships. A flimflam, a nuisance, an embarrassment of landfill. It hurts, doesn’t it?

In this post, ‘Invisible’ middle-aged women are fighting back English writer Helen Walmsley-Johnson talks about menopause, sexual, currency, dressing up for your age and hormones replacement. She recounted her personal experience with a group of young boys while walking through the park one day.

They made fun of her brisk walk, then began to crudely share their views on which of a group of passing schoolgirls they wanted to have sex with, clearly intending for her to hear. Tired of listening, Walmsley-Johnson asked them to move on — and to consider keeping their sexist remarks to themselves. They reacted with hissing, noxious anger, calling her a “dried up old c***” and suggesting that if a “real woman” were to talk to them about sexism, they might listen.

I have yet to experience this sort of things. Do I have to consider myself lucky?

I have always been younger looking than my real age (thanks to my ethnicity and good genes- the only good I inherited from my ancestors) not only by few years but by more than a decade, let’s say at least fifteen. When I’ve met my current husband I was thirty-seven but he thought I was twenty-two and so were his family and friends. When I was twenty-five they don’t allow me in the discos because the guards thought my ID was fake. I was once banned from accompanying my daughter to sexual orientation class because they thought I was her sister and only parents were allowed. And so the years go on like that, me being used to getting attention (lots of it actually) I don’t care for and wishing I’m invisible.

No, I don’t wear sexy or provocative clothes, figure-hugging attires will not find a home in my closet, I don’t wear makeup, high heels and go to the hair salon only once a year. In short, I am a low maintenance girl. Attracting attention to myself (any kind of attention) was and will never be my purpose in life and it irritates me enormously getting more than I think I deserved. And I thought it will go on like that till the end. Never cross in my naive brain that it will change someday.

The first sign happened when I turned forty- three. I was in the pharmacy and the guy behind the counter referred to me as ‘Madame’ instead of ‘Mademoiselle.’  I was taken aback. Shocked in fact. It hurts. I was always been ‘Mademoiselle’ instead of ‘Madame’ and suddenly it’s the other way around. I thought then that ‘now the process had begun.’

When almost a decade had passed with nothing or little changes to my status as a desirable woman I again thought it will never happen, until this year.

I am still looking at least fifteen years younger than my real age but I’m fifty-one, and forty isn’t twenty. And gradually I noticed subtle changes. The guys who are looking at me now are not the sixteen years old anymore. The twenty-something still glance my way but soon averted their eyes when they realized in which age category I truly belonged. Their gaze never lingers anymore or check more than once, they bestow me an interested glance which quickly fades and then move on without looking back. I can walk now into a restaurant without commanding attention. There was a time that wherever I walk men (women too but with hostility) stop whatever they were doing and look, and keep looking till I was out of sight. I have out of this world experience related to my sensuality and it’s strong effect on men you wouldn’t believe if I tell so I would spare you the details. I was by no means a ‘beauty’ or ‘femme fatale,’ the truth is I never know why I had this such effect on men, my ex once described me as magic but whatever it is, it is soon disappearing.

And with it comes the realization that I don’t want to be invisible. Not only as a woman but as a human being. I’m getting old yes, I’m losing my magic, probably so, but I still have feelings. Feelings never change. Who wants to be irrelevant?

Deborra-Lee-Furness, in her interview with Australian Women’s Weekly magazine, talked about jaw-droppingly insulting titles of stories written about her (and others who are in the same situation) being married to uber hunk Mr. Hugh Jackman who happened to be thirteen years her junior. She said: “People think a 58-year-old woman doesn’t deserve a big-shot, funny, handsome, movie star husband at all. It’s still acceptable for there to be a million internet articles about being a supposedly unattractive middle-aged man and be able to “punch above your weight” and bag yourself a younger, stunning partner.”

What could I say? I am married to someone 11 years my junior. Do I have to be scared? He’s getting old too I know but everyone is aware that getting old is not the same for men and women. I don’t have to list the differences because it is a common knowledge. Damn the double standard.

Marina Benjamin, author of The Middlepause found an essay from a 1903 issue of Cosmopolitan magazine in which a woman of 50′ used to be perceived as a person of achievement and grace and was “characterized as having ‘distinctive charm and beauty, ripe views, disciplined intellect, and cultivated manifold gifts’.” That is so clearly not the case nowadays, and for the woman approaching this milestone age, there is a good reason to feel anxious, or sad, or pissed off. She said:

“Fifty feels tarnished as an old coin, and worn — worn down and worn out,” she says. “There is nothing glamorous about 50 that I can see, not even in some retro way.” 

How about you? Do you have Invisible Woman Syndrome?

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Reflection

Where have the years gone? Sometimes I have to stop and think about how old I am. When I wake up in the morning, before I move this tired old body or look in the blasted mirror, I swear I’m still a young woman. It just feels like yesterday. I don’t know how it’s gone so fast.

-Lea Davey, Silkworm Secrets

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Stories

The story of how one t-shirt makes me feel

All I have left of you is one t-shirt.
I deleted all your texts and erased you from social media. I even threw away an odd sock I found of yours, black with an orange toe and heel.

This one t-shirt that I can barely bring myself to look at, let alone wear, crops up in my washing every now and again. It is so foreign to me, so infinitesimally you that I cannot wear it and feel at home. I do not recognize it. Maybe that is because I never felt at home with you. Never felt comfortable in my own skin. Always brittle, on edge, ready to snap and break in your presence. To shut down and shut you out.

This one t-shirt is all I have left to remind me of you. When I close my eyes and try to conjure your image up I cannot. I can only see small details. Your red curls, your ice blue eyes, the freckle on the pinkie of your left hand – the one I only noticed the day we walked away from each other. I remember the gap in your teeth, that funny tight smile and the way you used to say my name, hold my hand, stroke my face. But you as a whole/the person I thought I knew? That I cannot see.

This t-shirt is all I have left to remind me of the darkest five months of my life. The hardest, most painful, jagged and scarring thing I have ever endured. Five months of stretching and snapping. Five months of seeing how happy we could have been and five months of being miserable. Five months of wanting to let go and love and not being able to. Five months of pushing you away and wanting to hold you close. This t-shirt is a memento of my failure. Of my loss. Of you.

When I wear this t-shirt and people comment on it – they say ‘that suits you’ or ‘i haven’t seen you in that before’ or why don’t you wear it more often?’ And the words to tell them why I do not wear it catch it my throat. I say – it is not mine.

I can never bring myself to say that it is yours.

― Alice Nicolov

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Pedigree

…mine is shocking. Both in tales and in reality. At least from one side. Father’s side. If I’m going to believe (which is very difficult not to when evidence is staring me straight in the eyes and based on my own personal experience I have no reasons to doubt) I came from a family of cheating conniving  incestuous gypsy witches and nomad warlords who were/are fond of betraying and molesting each other in all possible ways. From my maternal side, I can easily describe them in few words: They are a bunch of upper middle class (possibly even rich) educated prejudiced narrow-minded tyrannical self-righteous people who have written my mother out of a will (for marrying my -to their eyes substandard- father) and refused to recognize our existence till I married my (foreigner therefore rich) ex but by then I was a rebel enough already and only too happy to defy them. Our very own little family… Well, what can I say? You have to read few of my post to get a little bit of insight how dysfunctional and pathetic we are. End of my pedigree sum up.

 “All parents damage their children. It cannot be helped. Youth, like pristine glass, absorbs the prints of its handlers. Some parents smudge, others crack, a few shatter childhoods completely into jagged little pieces, beyond repair.”
― Mitch Albom

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Slight

Someone said to someone:

“You’re lucky you’re ugly, at least you know people aren’t around just to fuck you.”

And it brought back memories…

…of the time someone has rowed a boat for four hours because I got it in my head to spend a night in an abandoned lighthouse on a sandbar somewhere. I said:

“I envy her -indicating another couple in a boat a few meters ahead of us- he is rowing for her.”

My companion stated the obvious. So, I asked him:

” Would you still do it if I were she/her?” 

The relationship was practically over before we even hit the shore.

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Laughter It’s Not

You think you miss someone. But it isn’t like that. You miss the moments you shared together. You miss the things they made you feel. You miss the persona you concocted in your head to fit the missing pieces you were too blind to discover for yourself. Until little by little, that persona faded away. You started to uncover the real missing pieces of their complex and erratic personality. Sometimes you’d become amazed at the qualities you hadn’t seen. You’d started appreciating them more and more, growing even more fond of them. Then the days had come when you’d scratched the surface deep enough to see their more obscure vices, and you started to question some things. Regardless of their importance, you pushed these away thinking that you could work through them, or you just ignored them altogether. Until the false image you’d created erodes completely and reveals a stranger. And only when this bubble burst is when you realize that you’d made a grave mistake to have given so much of yourself to them.

~ Berlin ArtParasites

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Notable

Our lives are full of opportunities to start over; however, every so often there’s a powerful and potent energy in the air that gives us a turbo-charged boost and makes new beginnings far easier to accomplish—and here it is, albeit with countless twists and turns along the way.

Note to remember: what we think we want or need isn’t always what we get, or what we truly actually want or need! Our intuitive heart knows the way, so it is vital to listen to its guidance, instead of following our unruly, irrational, overthinking mind.

If we aren’t open to change and we do not attune ourselves to the vibrational flow, we are in for a turbulent ride, as we are going to be faced with lesson after lesson, until we learn to accept the impermanence of life and that ultimately nothing stays the same for long.

In truth, there are no beginnings and endings. There is just a constantly changing force, in which life goes through diverse cycles of closure, rebirth, and transformation. Even the most sudden starts and endings are part of a series of events that have all led to the moment when change finally takes place.

If we think about anything we have experienced in our lives, whether it’s the end of a relationship, the offering of a new career, or an opportunity to move to a different part of the world, it has all been an accumulation of choices we have made at different stages of our lives—even if we aren’t aware that those choices were connecting significant dots together.

Therefore, anything we want to achieve is not as dramatic or out of reach as we might initially think. We have been taking small steps toward all that we want in our lives, pretty much throughout our entire life. We are masters of creation, and everything we achieve is all part of our own majestic plan, regardless of whether we are consciously or subconsciously aware of it. The only things we aren’t accountable or responsible for are other people’s motives and actions; that is why it is advisable to keep a safe distance from those whose intentions are to cause chaos and harm.

One of the main reasons that we procrastinate, feel unworthy, or do not take chances to get what we want is often because we feel that we have more planning, more work, and more to learn before we arrive there. However, this new moon is vibrating with the exact frequency required to give us a sharp cosmic push so that we stop procrastinating and truly start focusing on putting our lives into a high, passionate gear.

We may have been hearing the internal whispers that it is time to make decisions about major aspects of our lives—and to stick to those plans and see them through. But instead, we silence them with a thousand reasons as to why it is not yet the time, or we make excuses for other people’s behavior so that we do not have to deal with temporarily turning our lives upside down. Meanwhile, we are living half-lives, receiving half-loves, and doing ourselves (and possibly others) a huge disservice by not celebrating every sacred moment we have on this earth by living life to the absolute fullest.

We tell ourselves, “Tomorrow, or maybe next week…next month even,” so the time never seems to arrive. We hold on to thought patterns, people, jobs, and even harmful belief systems, just to put off the inevitable—despite it eating away at us and causing dysfunction and confusion on the inside.

When we silence all fears and worries, we are left with an inner knowing that isn’t afraid to push forward and get to the place that we know we belong—somewhere that offers fulfillment, peace, joy, and pure blissful happiness; but instead, many of us remain battling to steer a sinking ship.

This new moon is the time to question why we would rather stay stranded out in the middle of a cold, dark ocean, rather than braving the unknown and crossing the stormy waters to reach the calm of the shore.

Mercury retrograde usually tips our lives out of alignment and causes flurries of arguments, troubles, and strife to flare up—purely so that our awareness is raised and we see where we’re placing our focus. We come out of the retrograde phase breathing a huge sigh of relief that it’s all over, and along with that we also have discovered so much of what was going on behind the scenes and who was wearing masks to cover their true nature and motives. However, this is only the start; our lives were shaken up so that we recognize exactly where we need healing, and also where there is repair work to be done.

It is no coincidence that this powerful new moon in Aries coincides with the end of the retrograde; it is cosmically placed right at this exact time of existence for a magnificent shift to occur, and we are the ones in control who can drive that energy so that we move forward and take responsibility for where we are and who we are surrounded by.

The collective cosmic placings on the evening of the new moon make it one off the strongest and transformational nights of the year—and truly it is the ultimate time to sit ourselves down and have a serious internal conversation and contemplate why we are not prioritising ourselves and making decisions that are going to get us living the exact life we want and deserve.

It is going to take every bit of inner strength, courage, and determination we can muster to make the hard, but necessary, decision to move forward—and to put our happiness, spiritual and emotional health, and well-being first.

Of course, many of us have responsibilities and people and circumstances that we can’t just step away from—and that is okay, as the lunar energy always asks us to act with care, compassion, and love. This is less about walking away from anyone or anything, and more about recognizing that we are vital beings, precious creatures on this earth, and we only have this one life to show up and be the most wondrous creations of living, breathing life that we can possibly be.

We all have visions of what we hope to achieve during our lifetimes, and many of us know that we have been selling ourselves short in a variety of ways by not taking life by the reigns and directing our future in a way that gets us as close as we possibly can to what we know we are capable of and deserve.

No one ever said life would be easy or that our journey wouldn’t be full of plot twists, game changes, and obstacles; however, that is the divine reason we exist on this planet—to show the universe exactly what we are made of, and that despite hardships or life knocking us down, we refuse to allow derailments to throw us off course for long, or for turmoil to keep us sobbing on our knees.

As Rocky Balboa said:

“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place…and I don’t care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit—it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward…how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done. Now, if you know what you’re worth, go out and get what you’re worth. But you gotta be willing to take the hits. And not pointing fingers saying: you ain’t what you wanna be because of him or her or anybody. Cowards do that, and that ain’t you! You’re better than that.”

Whatever changes are required, we can do this. We have everything we need within us to pull ourselves out of the mud or to disassociate with anything or anyone that has been dragging us down and lowering our personal vibration so that we feel trapped, suppressed, or abused in any way. We are worthy of being around people who celebrate us, who adore us, who mutually love and appreciate us, and whose hearts love, care, and share in the same way ours do; yet, so many of us give ourselves away until we reach burnout and exhaustion—and in turn, we do not have the energy to share our unique souls and gifts with the world.

Aries is all about putting yourself first—and despite what the world may have tried to tell us, this is of the utmost importance and the least selfish thing we can do. When we are shining examples of self-love and self-care, those around us will have no choice but to do the same for themselves or to fall away; and in turn, we are in the vibration of love that flows so powerfully and abundantly.

“Self-care is so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.” ~ Eleanor Brownn

This new moon is the time we have been waiting for to actively start the ball rolling toward a beautiful new life by setting life-changing intentions and putting a magnificent plan into action. Then, allow the frequency of this super-charged cosmic energy to do whatever it needs to so that it manifests naturally and creates an existence that is far beyond our wildest dreams.

Be brave, be proud of yourself, have faith in your capability, and then ask and open so that you receive all that you want, need, deserve, and so much more.

~Alex Myles via Relephant

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Toxic

Your Mother fed you stories about
a Prince Charming who’ll kiss you and
wake you up to take you away from
everything that’s wrong with this wretched
world. And when your parents screamed at
each other late at night, you pretended to
be asleep: you waited for someone, anyone,
who’ll hold your hands and sneak you out
to somewhere where noise doesn’t drown.
And when you sit crossed-legs at remote
cafes, reading Orwell with a sigh, you
expect to meet someone. All the stories
that you’ve been chewing about grand
romantic gestures and a blue-eyed stranger
falls flat on its face because you know
it’s not real. When I met you, you told me
Eiffel Tower is overrated, and romance is dead.
And I told you how love is nothing but
a combination of three chemicals acting funny
in our head. But yet, you caress my earlobe
and talk for whole five minutes about its shape.
And I — I look at you shivering at night from fear,
wondering if I can hold you to a deep sleep.
When you read to me, I wonder if you still
think about fairy tales. I wonder if
you realize this is not one. When I kiss you,
our moans are filled with terror. And when I hold
you, I do it like it’s the last time, because
one day we’ll wake up from this.
In this story, there’s no Prince Charming.
In this story, there’s no saving.
In this story, there’s just us,
until there isn’t.

~ The Honest Musing

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Betrayed

Like I said so many times before, betrayal by your own flesh and blood is the worst betrayal of all. No one can get over that. The wounds will never heal and will bleed at the slightest touch. If you cannot trust your own family, then who you can trust? If you are not safe within your most intimate circle, would you ever feel safe amongst strangers? 

If you have been betrayed by your nearest and dearest (over and over again) you will have trust issues whether you like it or not. It happened to me. And naive that I was I refused to believe the truth that was staring me in the face all my life. I thought I meant something to them other than a meal ticket, we’re family after all. But sadly I was wrong. It took me five decades to realized I was and will never be anything to them but a source of income, someone to provide all their material needs. Not a single time they asked me how I am, never show a single ounce of gratitude, not even a superficial thank you. No, they thought and still think they are entitled to everything I worked for and everything I have and could earn. Care is something alien to them when it comes to me. I was the one who got away, and they hate me for it. 

It hurts. And the subject of a family will forever be a very sensitive issue for me. Home and love of blood relatives are something I did not and will never have. It is hard to accept and I still lay awake some nights thinking about the hows and whys but life goes on and I have to move with it no matter how painful the experience is…  

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Micro

I’m a big big girl
in a big big world…

My daughter tends to be self-centered. Her focus seems to be evolving around herself. The rest is side issues. One time I mentioned my thoughts to my son. He said to me:

“Mama, it doesn’t matter how small and mundane her problems are or if she is overreacting or not. The bottom line is for her they are extremely serious and that what counts.”

He also said when I asked him why he always gives in to the whims of her sister that it is because the tears are real and he can see the pain in her eyes.

He was talking about a bed. A double bed he just bought for himself but his sister fancied for crying out loud. I cannot say I understand but I guess I have to be thankful that they get along fine. Tragedy brings people closer they say. I guess that’s what it is. They share a very strong bond through painful experience.

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