Mary Bogue

Mary Bogue is always wondering about how we walk through life, and sees it as a dance; sometimes we're wearing high heels and doing the tango backwards in a man's arms, other times we're line dancing in flats while picking up after kids, and when we're lucky, we're barefootin' it freestyle.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

EXCEL FOR WOMEN - pantyhose not included

I am in the midst of transitioning what has been my art studio into a rental income unit - anything to keep me from getting caught up in that wretched corporate world where high heels click down cold hallways decorated with gold-framed oils of long-forgotten old white men or truly modernistic splat paintings; you know, a real job in executive management, not that I could even qualify anymore. And even if I did, generally speaking, the 25 and 30 year olds in hiring, are going to clearly see that I am one new roof away from not needing a need a new roof. Think about it. 

True. I have no desire to sit in a cubicle wearing pantyhose that are restiricting my va-jay-jay and making my inner thighs sweat like Tiger Woods at a real press conference, and do Excel spread sheets which seems to be a requirement these days. And let's face it, I would be working for the health care benefits which I would HAVE to have to cover the brain bleed brought on by the vice grips applied to my head in order to keep me focused on the computer screen, as I entered lists of numbers representing the latest sales figures of percentages of profits versus how many miles a monkey in a sales suit traveled to and from the most recent meeting. You get my drift. I'm already exhausted - and that's just from that run-on sentence!

See, that analogy is hell, and clearly I am a heaven on earth kind of woman. When it occurs to you that you have more sand at the top of the hourglass than below, it forces you to rethink your priorities. And if that doesn't do it, then just have someone dump half your sand out and see where that takes you.  Profit versus losses.  Let me break it on down:



Age 59 -all my own body parts.

Age 59 - I've seen my own body parts in the daylight.
Raised a strong-willed, free-thinking daughter.            
She disowned her family for a new one. Sorry, Grandma Mae.
Overcame breaking my back.             
Had to break it to overcome it.
Own my own home.
Can’t complain to the land lady about the peeling paint and popcorn ceiling.
Married Rob.
Lost my best friend and man of the family.
The expenses of new push-up bras, high heels, and sometimes faith in men who it turns out might not actually know the difference between an ax and a salad fork. Present man not included. 

Recently, I had a group of ten extraordinary women here for Valentine's Day. I don't like to toss the word extraordinary around, so you know these women are exceptional!  I "advertised" it as a Chick Party, and when asked by a guy friend, he wanted to know how the "Hen Party" went. I suppose the truth is somewhere in between. These were women that spanned a good 30 years difference in age, definitely different backgrounds, culture and geographics. Yet here we were, brought together by both having love in our lives, and  not having a valentine in our life right now, but being love and being the life in each other's heart which prods us, inspires us and challenges us to beat on. 

We found out that we shared histories of child-rearing, rapists-fearing, miscarriages, and Cinderella carriages, child abuse and no more the recluse. We ate foods that nourish, laughed with a flourish and recounted stories of  loved ones who left us smiling long enough to enjoy wine and chocolate.

Men don't understand women. If they did, they would never rape us, demean us, dehumanize us, pimp us or terrorize us with the threat of death for showing ankles beneath burkas. They would cherish each stretch mark that brought a human life forward, defend each tear and heartache caused us, give us a leg to stand on and a foot up - no matter if it was in a running shoe or a three inch heeled, silver and rhinestone, pointed-toe pump.  

My new guy, who I have strong feelings for but shall remain nameless (to protect his privacy) asked me on our first date why so many women seemed to dislike men or not trust them. And then he asked me why I seemed to love men. 

I could only answer, that at one time or another in our lives, men have had control- whether in the board room or beneath their roofs. Being "good girls" we were told to behave and be nice, be quiet and be polite. It's pretty hard to be anything but that when as a little girl, a big, heavy man is on top of you, one hand pressed over your mouth and threatening your family while raping you, or to find the words to react when your father has up and left you to start a new family, or when your new husband steals the promises, hopes and dreams of what could be from you and you are empty hearted. Some of us process those feelings as internal rage and no doubt create cancers in our bodies. Others of us swallow it down, gain weight, and move numbly through the hurt. Yet others of us, process it and try to find a way to make our lives more meaningful to others. That's what we did on Valentine's Day. 

A full life having been lived to its fullest with ups and downs.
Wisdom to trust again.
A rich life filled with beauty regardless of riches
A beautiful life, regardless of hurts and disappointments, respectful of peace and beauty, love and joy, and trusting in our tomorrows, our family members, and mostly ourselves.

Oh, and to answer my date's question, why do I seem to love men: I love men, as do most other women, for their potential to be compassionate, loving, loyal, integrity-rich, strong, stand-up, manned-up, honest, caring, and even peaceful males. I need to believe that, for the sake of being a woman and for the sake of the world. 

And that, my friends is why women excel. It is, after all, an art and a grace which allows us to love deeply, forgive but never forget, and trust in the here and now. In the end, at the end of God's page, we know it all adds up.