The pristine white of the silk scarf ached for color, and my Grumbacher Goldenedge 4626 paintbrush was ready to remedy the situation. Oh yeah. Creativity was my minion on this day. I envisioned a controlled pattern of yellows, greens, and oranges while dipping my brush into puddle after puddle of dye. I began to hum a little. My scarf was going to be awesome.
As I concentrated on the task at hand one of our cats began to play with a rubber band that had managed to escape the confines of my supply box. I gleefully watched her antics while holding my brush in midair.* In that moment an impatient drop of dye decided to ignore my precise work, swan-dived off my brush, and splattered itself across my scarf. â€œOh no,â€ I muttered. â€œHave I ruined it?â€
I stared at the â€œdamageâ€ for a moment and then had a powerful realization. The only reason this splotch of dye bothered me was that it didnâ€™t conform to the expected pattern. What a perfect metaphor for midlife women!
I keep saying that midlife is a time for exploration and a time to let go of perceived expectations. Women entering the third chapter of life should create a bit of a splash, they should go where they want instead of waiting for permission, and they should do the unexpected as long as it brings them joy and fulfillment. Wow. That drop of dye backed me against the wall and tested my beliefs.
Looking at my scarf with new eyes and emotions led me to add swirls and splotches and freeform lines. The original â€œmistakeâ€ became a celebration of imperfection. It was beautiful, expressive, and unapologetically wildâ€¦just like midlife women.
*(Why do I spend $4.99 on cat toys when a rubber band offers endless fun?)