A Woman of a Certain Age

As I was getting ready to head into Manhattan tonight, I overheard two folks talking outside my window. They’d run into each other and were catching up, a young-ish man and an older woman. They had a lot of crazy things to say and gossip to pass back and forth. They said their goodbyes and then there was silence as they walked away … then the guy shouts: “I just gotta say, you’re one of those people whose black don’t crack!  They both burst out laughing, and I almost did, too.

Today is my birthday.  Funny how fast these come around!  It’s my birthday, and I’m quite solidly middle aged now.  But I’m also one of those “uncracked” people that guy was shouting about outside my window.  Sometimes I feel every nanosecond of each one of my 52 years, but mostly not so much, mostly I’m well aware of how much I don’t look whatever people think my age should look like. I stressed out about my age a lot more when I was in my 40s. (Might have had something to do with all those younger men I dated … ahem.)  Now, I’m rude enough to tell people my age for no reason other than to make them tell me how not my age I look.  My vanity has done no mellowing over time!

Earlier this week, one of my neighbors asked me why she never sees me pregnant or with a baby (really, my neighbors will sometimes just say every damn thing!). I told her that time was past for me, and she said not yet, that I could probably have kids “up till you’re 40 or so.” Um, yeah. That time is p.a.s.t.

So that time is past, but now there’s time for about a bazillion other things.  This second half of my life is already shaping up to be very interesting — one knee surgery down, one to go, got fired for the first time in my life and have spent the last three months unemployed for the first time in my adult life, I’ve learned to spin, I’ve discovered a new writing genre to explore, I’ve reconnected with some old friends and started cultivating a gorgeous garden a new friends …

I’ve got work to do.  I’m only 52, but I’m already 52.  All kinds of clocks are ticking.  Think of how many crafts there are still for me to learn.  And how long is it going to take me to get over myself and stop hiding my grey hair with henna?

Time to prepare for embracing myself as the Crone, the wise, free, powerful me.  This non-working summer has given me a delicious taste of what the “free” can feel like — I have very much enjoyed my long days of reading, writing, strolling, thinking, seeing just how much I enjoy my own company — but I have a ways to go before I can pretend to wisdom or power.

I’ve got work to do.

image source


Hello to everyone who began following the blog after reading my last post.  I appreciate the follows and the comments.  You intimidated me just a little, I won’t lie.  I’ve started and dashed half a dozen posts since that one.  I worried about what kind of writing you’d expect each time you saw my blog in your inbox.  Well, the fact is, you’re here.  Stick around and you’ll see how non-linear and nonsensical I can be one minute, how focused and fierce I can be the next.  This is a theme-less space that is often left to grow over with weeds.  I’m only today remembering that I should have started a 30 stories in 30 days challenge on the first.  Maybe I’ll jump in with that tomorrow.  We’ll see.  I hope you’ll keep reading.  It won’t be praise- or comment-worthy every time, but I’d love to have you jump in and start conversation when you’re moved to do so.  Welcome to my tiny little corner of the internet!


8 thoughts on “A Woman of a Certain Age

  1. Wow Stacie, nice to read your post again and be caught up. Happy birthday and welcome to the club although I might be in another.
    I turned 65 in August but people still seem to respond with surprise although no one asks me about having a baby 🙂
    Sorry to hear about the job situation but you sound powerful and positive.
    Keep sharing posts. I’ve missed them and we still need to plan a meet up.


  2. Hi, Bonnie! Thanks for the birthday wishes and yes, we need to make a plan to meet up! Was thinking of you a couple weeks ago as a friend and I drove up the Hudson to spend the day in Cold Spring, wondering how close that is to you. 🙂


  3. woaca2008

    I love this for so many reasons. I love your telling people your age so they can tell you how you look so much not that age (I did that for quite a long while myself). I love that way you describe the ticking clocks and how much more you have to learn and to do. I love your bouncing off that incident outside your window. Write on!


    1. Thanks, Sonia. Yes, vanity is the next great hurdle. I don’t want to not care at all — a little vanity seems healthy to me — but I want to be done with the little conceits that get in my way and slow me down.


  4. Ah GirlGriot, the spirit of you as torchbearer, as depicted in the image I think it’s very apropos. At least it is for me, though I am sure it applies for the many others you’ve touched in your previous employs. After all I have you to thank, or is that cuss, for the birth and continued nurturing of my own little corner of the blog-o-sphere, other things. The sage as well as the student you have a way of leading even as you quest to ever learn more of yourself along with the world in general. Looking forward to more decades of watching and reading about it all.


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