Have I Become Invisible?

NanoPoblano

I recently read an article entitled, “5 Reasons to Enjoy Being an Old, Invisible Woman,” by Kristine Holmgren, dated November 17, 2014; featured on Next Avenue, a PBS website.

I got a good laugh at the title of the article and then it got me to thinking – hard. Just because I am an older woman with silver hair have I become invisible?

Sometimes people do look at me differently, like the guy in the pharmacy last week who told me he has no idea what color his wife’s hair really is. Why he said this I have no idea other than to draw reference to the color of my own hair. This had nothing to do with the prescription he was filling, so I am not sure how to take that – barb or compliment?

This author goes on to say that on her 50th birthday something earth shattering happened to her. She felt like she grew old and invisible. Suddenly, people ignored her and they quit responding to her. She even lost the attention of men! Holy crap that is serious!

However, Kristine Holmgren goes on to say that age has advantages while living in the shadows with an invisibility cloak draped around her shoulders. I tend to agree, because frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn what most people think of me anymore. I feel like Popeye, “I yam’s who I yam’s!”

Woman saying

(Image Credit: Etsy)

These are my top five reasons why I enjoy being older:

1. People ask my advice now.

When I was younger, most people did not think I had enough experience at life to voice an opinion. Little did they know that I had already had enough excitement in my life while being married twice, raising five kids, and going to college in between all of the chaos life brings. Now that I am older everybody wants to know what I think. “The older I get, the less I know,” is usually my answer.

2. I now have the freedom to be myself and wear what I choose.

Young women today have unbelievable standards to live up to. Everyone judges each other on the way they raise their children, the clothes they wear, and how youthful they look.

On the television show, “Modern Family,” I had to chuckle at how the women are always beautiful, wearing full makeup, hair and nails done, all while they are cleaning their homes or cooking a Thanksgiving turkey. Hollywood is such a fantasy.  No wonder women have image issues.

In comparison, I am sitting here in my nightshirt and bathrobe drinking coffee and writing this blog post. No makeup, no fancy clothes. Judge me if you want, but I feel good. I am not out to impress anyone. My normal clothes in the summer are a tank top and shorts, while in the winter I wear yoga pants and a tank top, with maybe a sweater. Comfort becomes a priority when you get older. Embrace this and take advantage of it.

3. I can say what I think.

When I was younger I had to learn to get along in the working world. Most of the time, women tend to hold themselves back and not say what they think for fear of being judged. I know I did that. Part of this is because of male and female perceptions of women working that still tend to bog us down. It is better than it was when I was young, but those damaging perceptions still hang around today. Give yourselves a break. Husbands and wives have to work now to survive and raise their families. Don’t add any more pressure than what is already there.

So, as you can see I say what I think now that I am older. No longer do I get eye-daggers thrown at me. Instead, I find that most people respect my honesty and appreciate that I (tastefully) said what was on my mind. That is a great feeling. Try it.

4. I have not lost my “personal mojo.”

Unlike the author, Kristine Holmgren, I do not feel like I have lost the attention of the opposite sex or anyone for that matter. Our female aura is uniquely and personally ours. If you choose to portray yourself as an old woman – that will come through to others and that is how you will be viewed. I choose to be seen as a nice person with experience. It is not all about your looks. It is how you carry yourself and how you speak. I listen to other people too. Respect toward others is vital to how other people view you.

5. I spend my time doing the things I love.

I have a huge list of things that I love: Spending time with my husband, kids, and grand kids, blogging, reading, writing, gardening, crocheting, walking in nature, playing with my dogs, drinking tea, drinking wine, etc.

You get where I am going with this. The best part about getting older is finding the time to do all the things you wanted to do when you were younger, but instead put off because of all the other obligations you had in life.

NaBloPoMo_November

Embrace life. Look for the good in people and learn to be grateful for the little things. Do what makes you feel happy. Learn to find peace with becoming older. It is not as bad as it sounds.

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Thanks for visiting today.  I sure enjoyed seeing all of you!

Silver Threading

About Colleen M. Chesebro

Colleen M. Chesebro is an American Novelist & Poet who loves writing paranormal fantasy and magical realism, cross-genre fiction, syllabic poetry, and creative nonfiction. She loves all things magical which may mean that she could be experiencing her second childhood—or not. That part of her life hasn’t been fully decided yet. A few years ago, a mystical experience led her to renew her passion for writing and storytelling. These days she resides in the fantasy realm of the Faery Writer where she writes the magical poetry and stories that the fairy nymphs whisper to her in her dreams. Colleen won the “Little and Laugh” Flash Fiction Contest sponsored by the Carrot Ranch Literary Community on November 2017, and in 2018, she won first place for the “Twisted Travel” category. Colleen lives in Arizona with her husband. When she is not writing, Colleen enjoys spending time with her husband. She also loves gardening, reading, and crocheting old-fashioned doilies into works of art. Learn more about Colleen on colleenchesebro.com.
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54 Comments

  1. I love being invisible — now I have the time to find the authentic me. A SeasonedSistah free and unencumbered is what I choose to be. Thank you for sharing.

    • You are welcome. It is interesting that we have to wait to find ourselves late in life I think. Raising our families, jobs, etc. all have to come first leaving us last. I am right there with you. <3

  2. Well said Colleen, and you’re as old as your outlook, which is lovely! <3
    I would love to be able to retire from work in a couple of years, so many things to do and see. Sadly the mortgage won't be paid until I'm 70!

  3. I’m still a youngster at 52, Colleen, and you are so right that you are as old as you feel. I know too many people who seemed to give up on life after reaching 50. Me? No way. Life for me began at 50 and I’m loving every moment.

  4. Lovely, thank you for this post, we all need it as we are all getting older! And I will not judge you for sitting in a bathrobe and drinking coffee while writing your blog post! Sounds like a great idea 🙂

  5. You know your purpose and mission in life and you are using each and every second of life in some constructive work.
    Good Job!

  6. I’ve found something interesting as I enter my 70th year. People seem to see me more; are more willing to stop and hold the door for me; to ask if I need help; to walk me to the car at night. I’m like my mother in not knowing how I’m supposed to exactly FEEL at 70, like her, I still have the 40 year old inside me, working away. But I am offered a kind of respect that’s rather nice.

  7. Great post:)

  8. Indeed, Colleen. This is a marvelous post. You are as old as you decide you are.

  9. Yeah! You nailed it! Us more mature ladies are only invisible to the youth and beauty obsessed media and that is good news. I am so grateful I am not held to some crazy standard of what is beautiful that changes all the time and is generally impossible to attain without surgery and photo-shop!
    Hooray for us, aging like fine wines!!

  10. I know lots of guys think silver hair is really cool. The media wants us to feel we need things outside of ourselves to remain worthwhile. Also I think women sometimes do that thing where they embrace not giving a damn a little too much. My art professor had beautiful shoulder length silver hair and all the young college boys in my class didn’t seem to think she was invisible.

    Worrying about if I’m invisible is like worrying about dying–a waste of valuable time 🙂

  11. Very good! I love it and can identify totally, although I am a few years behind. There is no need to explain oneself anymore! 🙂

  12. The first time, my ash white hair came in handy, was a discount at a restaurant, I called my mama right after leaving the scene to report I had finally arrived into the promise land. Now not long after that, I misjudged a step off a curb and fell and hit my head pretty hard. Well, in the crowd I heard some one say “did you hear that old man crack his skull”, again I called mama to report that the promise land had little pity for mishaps.

  13. Another brilliant post, Colleen.
    I too love the freedom and self confidence that comes with getting older.
    I have strands of grey/white hair, mixed in with my copper tints, that still shows at the ends.
    Would I be 20 again…no thanks. I’m fine just as I am.😊

  14. Hi, I came via Sandi’s reblog and now I see Christine Robinson in your comments so I know I’m in good company. I plan to stick atound 😊

    I have blogged in one post or another about every point you touched on. I am thoroughly loving the newly discovered me – finally embracing my introversion instead of trying to change it and diving headlong into all the creative curiosities I’ve longed to explore. Life is GOOD!

  15. Thank you for your insights, Colleen, with which I wholeheartedly agree. After a lifetime of work, it is a wonderful feeling to have reclaimed my life. Finally, I have lots of time to read, write, hike in our beautiful mountains, enjoy the company of my friends and do other things I enjoy. The only thing they can keep is the aches which have started creeping up on me surreptitiously! :)

  16. I’m “old as dirt.” And love it! Colleen, I love your insights and gray locks!

  17. Reblogged this on Author P.S. Bartlett and commented:
    Thank you for blessing me with this today. I really NEEDED it. xoxo

  18. Really liked your blog. @ or 3 years for me, but I already do most of what was written. Enjoy, Enjoy, Enjoy!

  19. It is a strange journey growing older. I have very little gray at my age (55 yrs in 9 days!). I’m a redhead (strawberry blond) so my hair will go white like my dad’s, I hope. Besides the gray hair though, I feel that growing older means shaking off the vanities of youth ( from Desiderata–“Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth”). Your list is perfect! Thanks, Colleen, for an insightful blog!

  20. Reblogged this on What oft was thought and commented:
    As someone who has will no longer see 49 again, I appreciated Colleen’s wisdom on the benefits of getting older.

  21. I really liked this post, Colleen! I am in an odd position age-wise, since I am over 50 but had my youngest child at 41. I probably should work harder at looking “younger” for his sake, but why should it matter, anyway? I hope it’s okay if I reblog this post to my other site (whatoftwasthought, which is less about beautiful places and more about things I’m thinking).

    • By all means Sandi! This applies to all of us and I do agree with you about looking how you want. It does not really matter in the scheme of things. Just be yourself and above all, be happy!

  22. When I let my hair go naturally the silver grey colour it wanted to be I found people were suddenly a lot nicer to me in public places. Either respect for the elderly or pity for the little old lady….but who cares? Your number 5 is my favourite. Feels like freedom.

    • I love that you got that. Freedom it is! I do love that people treat us nicer with our silver locks. I get called Miss Colleen now too. Although, I do live in the South and most folks are polite anyway. 🙂

  23. Great topic Colleen. It is hard to see the images that are put forth in the media. The standard we are asked to meet. I hate it when I hear people bitching about their age or they hate growing old or they don’t want to look old or whatever. It is like being old is a disease and no one wants to catch it 🙂

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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