Now I Am “Miss Eileen, Older Lady Esq.”
Well it happened; I returned to the work world, and it was a happy return. Being an entrepreneur has had its ups-and-downs. I have not given up totally, but simply need some things right this instant.
I took a job that has me on the P.M. shift, and during certain seasons here in Georgia, it gets cold at night(later I would realize this was a poor excuse). I have never been a pants type of girl, but the job has prompted me to become one. So there it is, use of the term “girl” referencing myself. Well what’s wrong with that I think; I am still vibrant and healthy, when I bother to take time I still can hold my own, or so I think/thought. I chuckle as I write this, because more and more I see the vanity rising from the ashes of my youth.
One day a younger woman was walking along side of me in the hall as we left class together, we have been in training for several weeks now. She is a tall shapely lady, pretty face, well coiffed hair. She says to me, ” I hope you aren’t uncomfortable because I know you see me staring at you.” I replied to the contrary. She said, “It is just that you remind me of my MOTHER so much.” I smiled and said,”Oh really.” She was excited and happy I suppose, because I hadn’t noticed her stares. I did not know what else to say so I replied,” That is funny, but you know it is said we all have a twin..” I kept smiling. I cannot say I was flattered or bothered; that is until I relayed the story, over and over and over again.
The image of Goldie Hawn in “The First Wives Club” resonated in my mind. The scene where Goldie’s character is told, by a younger prettier actress, how happy and excited she was to have Goldie Hawn cast as HER mother. Goldie was white and frozen faced. I hoped I did not have that look on my face, but was not at all sure. Disney villainesses like Cruella De Vil, Snow White’s and Cinderella’s respective Evil Stepmothers, Maleficent and my personal favorite Ursula(love that name)flashed before me. Each of them older, beyond child-baring years; gray, white streaked, or covered hair, dark, sinister, evil and angry that “young and pretty” existed and they were no longer a part of that world. Unable to embrace what time had given to them, because they were so concentrated on what it had taken away from them instead.
Yet, none of the positives of aging occurred to me or obviously that the process was beginning to take shape in my life. Then a couple of weeks later when, I stood outside of my co-worker friend’s cubicle while our “coach” was having a discussion in which he used a few curse words. Now I must tell you during my life I have heard a curse word or two, I have actually used a curse word or two, but what happened subsequent to this is what is interesting. Our coach who is younger than me said, ” Oh I am sorry I have to reminded myself to watch what I say around OLDER people…” Whatever he said beyond that I basically turned off. My opinion of this man changed(I am being honest my ego took a HIT and I was pissed with him). He is not an especially young man nor is he my age, but from his appearance I know we are closer to class mates than being on opposing sides of the “generation gap”.
Alright, my hair is salt and pepper( I get many compliments on it), I dress conservatively (in reality uncharacteristic of ME would be a better description) my patience is not at it’s peak, and I do not learn or retain at the level or speed I used to. I have changed and I came to grips with perhaps my “sexy” has abandoned me, along with several other attributes of my younger years. I wasn’t really paying attention to it, but now suddenly it was gone. Taken for granted and ignored, I woke up and it was gone. Wow, that was a bit distressing. It is amazing how our perceptions interfere with true sight. Now the only person I remind folks of is someone that has experienced a bit of life. There is nothing wrong with being a mother. I have two sons and a granddaughter, why should I trip? Well because it took a series of events to remind me that I was not quite ready to inhabit the “rest home”. Although my behavior suggested otherwise; I work -out 5 days a week, I take the stairs from the forth floor several times a day in an 8 hour period by choice without ramifications, and stiletto heels are still a part of my wardrobe.
While I was in the midst of doing so many other things in my life, transitioning into other stuff, I lost sight of ME and who I truly am inside. I didn’t even know these changes were only scratching the surface of what was really going on. Upon realizing this, with the help of my friend(MJ), I had to come to grips that losing me was affecting every other aspect of my life; from performing at my new job to my interaction with my granddaughter. I said to myself, “I AM Miss Eileen and this is who Miss Eileen is. Miss Eileen is gonna do Miss Eileen the way she always has, as long as she has the strength, vitality, and desire to do just that. Furthermore, I am gonna feel just fine in doing as such.” The proclamation helped me “rise from the ashes” and move forward.
Therefore when you get stuck or overwhelmed, rest assured the answer is waiting in the wings, sometimes you just have to take out your glasses and look for it.