So, I just read an article that tells me, “It’s Official: Women Are Invisible After 49!” I think the author must have gotten some blowback, because later, the title was softened to, “It’s Official: Many Women Become Invisible After 49.” Gasp! I’ll be 50 (God willing!) in August.
But I had to really mull that over. That’s okay; God’s invisible too. Miraculously, He still gets the job done! And in a way, I feel that I’m on God’s payroll. The salary is negligible, the job requirements vary, but the retirement benefits are out of this world!
Some of my best work really is invisible to the human eye. Praying. Encouraging. Offering a kind word to a stranger. Writing for this blog. I’ve realized that what I really write about is “the good life.” Well, not in the way the world might think of it. It’s not partying till dawn and getting into a limo to go to the secret rave.
When I was up and at ‘em, hale and hearty, ready to party… well, that wasn’t me anyway. I believe I squandered the gift of good health in my younger years, and didn’t realize that stress leads to illness. Even the stress of, where’s the party? What is everybody doing tonight? Having to be in the group, keeping up with the gang, it really never led me to peace. Nor even a sense of belonging. It seemed to be someone else’s idea of what “the good life” was.
It was the stress of a terrible job that led me to believe that going out with friends all the time after work was a relief valve, and that it was actually good for me.
Like so many people, I was looking for the right thing in the wrong direction.
It wasn’t until I left that life and became a Freelance Writer – and, more importantly, found faith again – that I realized we are all trying to fill a void, feel a sense of peace, of purpose, of community. Find those who share interests that are meaningful to us. Connect with the divine.
So I worked to create a home in which all those who enter (save burglars, tax collectors and sundry miscreants) feel welcomed, appreciated, even loved. Remembered the joy of reading a poem that stopped me in my tracks (like, well, Marge Piercy’s “Tracks”) as I marveled at the power of words. Sat in the sunroom with a good book and a steaming cup of coffee and basked in the stillness, grateful to my bones for God’s grace.
So you say, cloak of invisibility. I say, cardigan of comfort. Tomato, tomah-to. It doesn’t make a difference if the world doesn’t recognize me. I know who I am. I know whose I am. Believe me. This is the good life. And I’m still here.