Thank you to everyone who commented on my last post with your wise and often flattering remarks!
It's strange to be mulling over thoughts of ageing and mortality when everything in the world around me is bursting with new life and growth. This continues to be an unusually warm and sunny spring (the news tonight is saying it's the warmest April in 300 years). The martens have arrived as predicted a few days after the swallows and the air is filled with their joyful cries. The trees are covered in brilliantly green, tender new leaves; the hedgerows are crowded with foamy Queen Anne's lace, starry ramsons, delicate stitchwort, and bright splashes of red campion, bluebells, primroses and dandelions.
But isn't this one of the messages of Paganism? The wonderful, mysterious wheel of life that goes cycling on, no matter what.
I have decided I will make a good old lady (I'm aiming for a cross between Maude from the film 'Harold & Maude' and the old lady with the goats in 'Cold Mountain' - with perhaps a touch of Miss Marple primness for good measure). I'm not sure I share the current enthusiasm for 'growing old disgracefully' - that seems to infer trying to kid everyone you're still a spring chicken when you're actually an old crow - dressing too young, trying to be trendy when you clearly have no clue and attempting to convince yourself you're immortal by taking up ridiculous pastimes like 'extreme' sports. Growing old gracefully actually sounds like a much better option to me.
In the meantime I'll enjoy the gifts that the passage of time has brought me so far - increased self confidence, trust in my own intuition, and a healthy disregard for whether my bum looks big or not. Actually, that last bit's not quite true - I know it looks big, I just don't care very much any more. And I'll be grateful that halfway through or not, I still have a strong, healthy body, an inquiring mind and wonderful friends and family to share the big adventure of this life with. Hey, more gratitude! Just proves the point of my earlier post - once you stop trying to force it, it just bubbles up on it's own!