I was a little girl during the 1970s, the age of Women’s Liberation. I remember the feminist anthems being played on the radio, although I was too young to understand their context and often their lyrics.
One day I was playing at a friend’s house and singing along to “I am Woman” on the radio: “I am strong. I am invisible.”
My friend’s mom told me I didn’t have the lyrics right. When I went home, I asked my mom about it and sang her the line in question. My mom’s response: “Sounds about right.” (For those not familiar with the song, the actual lyrics are, “I am strong. I am invincible.”) It wasn’t until more than a decade later that I appreciated the humor in her response. My brain’s ability to file those things away continually amazes me.
My brain let loose this little story when I was reading an article in Woman’s Day magazine. It discusses how women of a certain age become invisible in our society. I guess what tied that in my mind to feminism is how the author turned around the invisibility. She saw it as a blessing and re-framed it as being “transparent.” She felt that her outer shell no longer stood in the way of people being able to see her inner self. As I read it, I thought of how empowering that idea is – that gender became less of a barrier with age. Yet another silver lining to the aging process.
The concept that people would be able to see the real me would have horrified 20-year-old Tammy. At that point in my life I spent so much energy trying to be whatever other’s wanted so they wouldn’t look deeper. I couldn’t appreciate the real me and I knew that no one else could either. I’m so glad I grew out of that.
I’m also glad that at the time in my life when I looked my best (in my mid-to late 30s and dancing 20 hours a week), I knew I looked hot and was able to appreciate it.
The experience would have been completely lost on me had I actually been in shape in my 20s. Things definitely happen for a reason!
What are some of the benefits of getting older that you have discovered? or Am I the only one that reads print magazines any more?