Why do so many women reach the "golden" years with such bitterness? They look at their life, not as the sum of their experiences, but as a huge pile of regret like forgotten, unwashed laundry. "If I had left the marriage sooner, "if I had gone to school," "if I had not married that man," "if I had been born in a different era; if, if if.
Regret is a huge rock tied to your ankle that sinks you deeper and deeper into that morass of hopelessness. Nothing can change those choices, those mistakes, those very human decisions that fill in the lines of your life. The only thing that changes is how you decipher the code.
To become old women who think our lives were a wasted mess is to deprive ourselves of the wisdom gained through hardship.
Regret is bitter and foul tasting. We should look in the mirror every morning and spit out that foul taste. We should run our fingers over the lines in our face and be cognizant that every line speaks to our experience.
We should celebrate our saggy breasts and loose skin because they are who we have become. We should strive to fend off that dark visitor called regret that threatens to visit us in the waning years of our life. We should celebrate the good times and remember all we have gained from the bad. We should lead the way with our children, not through criticism, contempt and jealousy but with wisdom and good humour. We should become spirited, foolish old wisdom women who look to the past and say, "Yes! I made it!"