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Mid-Life Is Beautiful

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Is it weird that I am writing here and a blog as well? I don’t give out my blog address, usually, so if you happen across it, you must be looking for it, desperately. But, don’t do that. I would never tell anyone to read my blog. It is neither juicy, nor entertaining. It just reflects the life that I am leading these days, as a forty-two-year old woman.


I don’t like to disclose a lot of personal information, mainly because it comes back to haunt me whenever I have tried to do so in the past. That means, if I was the one that robbed that 5/3 at gunpoint last week, I don’t think that I would mention it on my blog, or in any of my hand-written journals. 


Actually, I don’t think that 5/3 was robbed, at gunpoint or otherwise. For the dense, that was just a hypothetical situation (aka “pretend”) used to paint a picture of my virtue, my innocence, or, at the very least, my tact. I am middle aged now, and honestly, I love life more every day that I wake up for a new one. I am not going to blow what I have gained in terms of life experience and wisdom by taking a 1 in 1000 chance at complete freedom by the bigger chance of losing all of it forever. 


Plus, I would never want to hurt anyone … 


So, here I am, writing for DivineCaroline, a Web site I had never heard of until yesterday, when I got an e-mail from them. As well as being middle-aged cautious these days, I am also the last one to catch up on tech trends. I adore the internet, and I use it well, in my opinion. I never go to chat rooms. I read up on things that I am interested in. These days, oddly enough (and this is only odd if you know the old me) I am really into prehistoric North American culture. That is my love, my aspiration, and the culture(s) enter my every waking thought at least once an hour each day. 


I have no explanation for this. And I can assure you most positively that until the past spring (April of 2008, in fact) I knew absolutely nothing about Paleo-Indians of any culture, much less the Midwestern ones. But, if you saw me on the street today, you could come up and say “Hey there, Emily, how are the Hopewell Mounds in Millennium Park?” And I would reply, “Last time I was in the park, the mounds were breathtaking. I fell to my knees in awe when I saw them from the shore of the gravel pit nearby. It floors me to think that any culture of man lived here and died here, even before the magnificent Jesus Christ graced the world with his presence. Can you believe that?” 


Unfortunately, no one ever asks me about that. 


We have some mounds here. They are not of the Serpent Mound fame, those famous Hopewellian structures located in Chillicothe, Ohio. There is no designated park that supervises them, admits tourists, and takes money for their maintenance fees. No, these mounds are in their natural form, having survived various grave robbers, freeway expansion attempts, and suburban party animals that come to the remote-yet-nearby spot to drink a beer they stole from Mom and Dad, and soak up the dark vibe of the local lore. They stand today, much like they did two millennia ago, 10-foot hills that contain the dead of a lost culture, a Paleo-Indian tribe called Hopewell in today’s terms. 


So what, you might ask. What do some dusty old bones have to do with a midlife crisis?


First of all, I despise that term mid-life crisis. I enter every new year of my life with trepidation, because, I suppose, of our youth-obsessed culture and the myths that are spun as a result of that. Aging is thought to be an unpleasant experience that involves the deterioration of mind and body, of all things that a person recognizes as familiar to themselves as an identity. If you believe all of the media prattle, you would think that you rise on the first day of your thirtieth year with strange furrows running the course of your face, ones that weren’t there the previous day when you were still in your twenties. 


However, that is only true for people who are so shallow that they think the only thing that they have to offer in life is a chronological number as a reason for their being. I am small in years, ripe, and sexy! Worship me now, with your attention and money! This is my last gasp before I am rendered useless! 


Most humans aren’t that petty. 


I have yet to meet a person who subscribed to that school of belief wholeheartedly, but I have met a few men-sadly, some that were close to me, who saw no use for women older than voting age, or drinking age. People with such little character that they need to try to adhere to the young and vulnerable because they can dominate them-mentally, physically, and otherwise, are pathetic excuses for human beings anyway, no one that you want any serious contact with, and definitely not anyone you would want to expose your children of either sex to. They should not be given any serious credibility for their opinions in general-only close scrutiny by those who want to protect their young and innocent. 


But, I digress. I didn’t want to go on a tangent about perverts. I was merely trying to prove the worth of life at any age! 


I love being forty-two. Not only do I have all of my life experience to draw upon each and every new dawn, but I have confidence to do so. A person tends to disregard little things like insecurity in the fact of greater knowledge. All of we humans are inherently flawed, yet we are also, each and every one of us, unique. We are a creation of a Higher Power, God, if you will, or fill in the name and title if you won’t go there. If you live long enough to reach that point of self-knowledge, you not only begin to accept yourself as you are, but you began to accept the flaws of other beings. Fact, you might not ever use the term “Flaw” as a descriptive for humans, because to call any of flawed is to insult God and his work. 


A year ago, I might have cringed when anyone rolled out “God” in a conversation. My past was full of bad experiences with people who claimed to be enlightened by the creator God, only then succumbing to the worst of human weaknesses in God’s name. Take, for example, a media unit that has a readership of 500 thousand, one that devotes its name and pages to the semi-incoherent rants of human beings speaking on God’s behalf. 


Impossible in this day and age, you might think. If you had told me of such a thing a year and half ago, while I was still in California, I might have chuckled and had a grand old belly laugh. No one follows such schools of belief anymore, do they? Why, all humans have, at their disposal, the same written information that anyone else in the world does, thanks to the internet. They can read up on every subject that might call up an interest, and if there are any blank spots or confusion, they can refer to their question with the stroke of a few fingers of the keyboard (and the poor can go to the library and use computers with ease, so don’t throw that at me, okay?) 


Fact is I was once a negative naysayer that thought that the human race was so steeped in evil that a nuclear attack might be a blessing in disguise, to being the person who will tell you first not to jump. Err on the side of caution. Don’t be hasty on any decisions of any kind. 


And why not? 


First: It is my experience that those people who claim to know what is going on, and their way is the only way, don’t know shit. The world is vast, complex, beyond human understanding at this writing. Meaning, as of this moment, no one has figured life and the world out. 


So, everything that you have heard may be wrong. There are more answers out there, for you and all of humanity to come to at your leisure. If you continue to look for answers of any kind, not only will you find some answers, but, delightfully, you will find more questions to keep your mind busy! 


To tie this back to my original thought—when I returned to this Midwestern town a year ago, it was with a heavy heart. I never knew that there might be something in my funny town that might intrigue me with not only a mystery, but with a passion to find an answer to that mystery. 


The Hopewellian culture is a mystery to almost all of us who try to read and communicate in the usual methods. They didn’t, from what I have read, have a written language that we know of. Yet, these people hunted BIG game with small weapons that they fashioned by hand from sticks and rocks. They created beautiful art with materials that came from thousands of miles away, when travel of that type is unimaginable to an everyday mind. They had complex burial rites for their dead, many of which still exist in form today, after a couple thousand years have gone by the wayside. 


No one can tell you what became of this culture, the people that built effigy mounds that can be seen from outer space 1500 years later. If you don’t believe me, go to your live maps online and go to Chillicothe, Ohio. There you will see structures made by ancient man with less than a tiny portion of our knowledge today-but they created myths and structures that still puzzle us today. 


This is one factor that explains my newfound faith.


How dare I assume that life is cheap and there is nothing else after, when such evidence to the contrary exists in our world today?

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