It is widely reported in the media that women often fear the onset of menopause – considering it to be the start of a slippery downhill slope into old age and obscurity – because with menopause often comes the idea that loss of sex appeal and attractiveness is mandatory. And this can be particularly painful for women to contemplate: the loss of their physical beauty and with that their desirability.
Why is it that so many of us have made just one cycle of life the be-all and end-all? After all, there are many active, healthy and engaged years left for menopausal or post-menopausal women. This period of a woman’s life can actually be a time when she can expand more and more deeply into her essential self, her inner quality, and bring that to the world – despite the ongoing ageing process of her body.
It’s interesting to consider this in more depth. Could it not be that a woman might have something different to offer as she gets older? Yes, she might have a few wrinkles, her body not so firm and perhaps her libido is not as resilient as in her younger years.
But have you ever really looked deeply at and felt an older woman? There is a sense of something rich, mature and possibly deep that can emanate through her body, a quality that is attractive in and of itself.
And isn’t this something which is being overlooked, or denied, and certainly undervalued in our societies today? And could it even be that we as humanity, in our western cultures at least, have actually been robbed of a beautiful heritage that has much to offer and be inspired by?
I am offering here the image of the ageing gracefully, sexy older woman as something that is desirable, something that younger women might even aspire to and look forward to being one day – beautiful mature women.
But we can’t put the blame outside ourselves either. As mature women we ourselves are often at fault here too. We can too readily cave in to society’s messages, and give up on ourselves, instead of taking responsibility for the women we are and the beauty and wisdom we have inside. So what does it look like not to do this?
This is the mature woman who is at home in her body; she knows who she is because she has connected with her inner beauty or quality – the essence that has been there with her all along that is ageless and free. This ease and depth shines through her, sparkling at times and at other times steady, still and serene and often powerful.
And yet she is just an ordinary woman; you will see her at the supermarket, driving her car, at work or with the family.
There is something noticeably different about her though… which can be felt – a gracefulness perhaps? Or even a sex appeal that has nothing to do with hormones.
And isn’t this the true appeal of a beautiful, mature woman? Something that is not exactly tangible but nevertheless a quality to inspire women of all ages.
Josephine B., Australia