REFLECTIONS

This morning my plan had been to write as soon as I woke up. But first, like most writers, I cleaned a fairly clean room and then I sorted some drawers and files…then I procrastinated some more by reading quotes about procrastination.

“As a writer, I need an enormous amount of time alone. Writing is 90 percent procrastination: reading magazines, eating cereal out of the box, watching infomercials. It’s a matter of doing everything you can to avoid writing, until it is about four in the morning and you reach the point where you have to write.” ― Paul Rudnick

After reading this, I gave into the mood 100% and descended into time waster’s hell…British Mystery Series. In my attempt to download Blue Murder from a ‘legal’ site, my computer froze on a pornography pop-up. This has never happened in the countless times I have used ____.com to watch British Mysteries(a fabulous life sucking, soul shrivelling site that will not be named).

Incredulous Me

In the 45 minutes it took me to wrestle my computer out of the hands of this Porn Industry computer hacker, I had a transformative experience with the naked young girl posing on my screen. Here she was, the other woman, entering my life, uninvited yet again!  My first reaction was anger and judgement after a furtive glance at her body. I mentally chastised her for luring men away from decent women. And I think I am enlightened and compassionate. I took a deep cleansing breath, and worked my way off my self righteous pedestal. I looked at her again, searching her eyes, to see her for the person she is…to stop my objectification of her. I then experienced a transformative shift. I felt a surge of compassion well up in my heart for this sad-eyed, young girl who believed that this job was her only option. That her only talent was her willingness to let others use her for their gratification.

Once again, fate intervened and my post was jettisoned in a surprising direction. The most uncomfortable of subjects…sex… Argh. Too personal, too confusing… I think I’ll get me to a Nunnery…But before I go, I will try to unravel some of the complexity around women and sexuality…the whore/madonna complex.

If I intend to be embody The Other Woman, I must attempt to end my androgynous persona. I am comfortable now, having men only as friends. I cannot imagine flirting, kissing and God forbid, anyone but me and my doctor, seeing me naked.

When I was single, immersed in the dance of finding boyfriends and husbands, emphasizing my sexuality was expected and condoned. I felt comfortable in this role and like most women, I was never more attractive (or thinner) than on my wedding day(s). I enjoyed being pursued and desired. But the feeling of desirability is long gone, a distant memory. Mothering and sensuality seemed antithetical. Mothers are meant to be available – perpetually opened armed with a ready lap: soothing, encouraging, nurturing…the antithesis of alluring. 

How am I ever going to find the other woman inside of me? I’m not a mother of young children any longer but neither am I The Other Woman! I’m definitely Between 2 Marys, in some androgynous zone of ambiguity. Perhaps the extreme duality of the whore/madonna can be tempered, even though centuries of history seem to indicate otherwise. In 16th Century Venice for example, this Italian city was founded in the myth of Venus rising from the sea. Two iconic yet disparate images of the goddess Venus reflected the mores of Venice; one goddess image is the pure and inviolate virgin, the other, its antithesis, the licentious goddess…seeker of pleasure and love. In viewing paintings of the disparate goddesses, the virgin is in white, alone or with angelic children, while the libidinous goddess is with a man, half-clothed,  the colour red prevalent!

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 Venetian women with a sizeable dowery, could marry a rich man. As his wife, the woman was a cloistered creature, without education or financial independence, her life being devoted entirely to home and family. Women without fortune chose to enter the convent  or to become a courtesan. But Venetian courtesans, unlike the wives, could mingle freely with the rich and famous and acquire an education and wealth of their own. They could  participate in literary, political and intellectual circles, publish any works, and importantly, all the sensual pleasures were available at her beckoning. Although the 16th Century Venetian courtesan lived a somewhat enviable lifestyle, this did not last. Religious zealots blamed the plague and war on the courtesans’ debauchery, and ended the delicate balance that allowed both sets of women to coexist.

 The polarity between the virtuous and the licentious became intensified. 500 years later and this tension still exists. Can a woman be compassionate and nurturing in ‘kick-ass’ high heels? Can a woman who enjoys a sensual life, have the respect of her society?

ASPIRATIONS FOR WEEK 15 OF 52

CHANGING FROM MOTHER MARY TO MARY MAGDALENE

Where to start on this? How to move out of my comfort zone of intellectualizing The Other Woman, and become her? As this Blog is an open forum, ideas are welcome!

I will share one step I have made…I purchased  a beautiful, deep pink lipstick…and I am wearing it! This colour is more bold than any I have worn in years… if I wore lipstick at all. I feel good applying it to my lips. It certainly makes me more visible.

But most importantly, I must once again, see men as more than friends…I can barely type I am so nervous. I’m afraid of what I might commit to in my zeal to finish this post. I am driving back to BC and am scrambling to pack and schlep my stuff down the 3 flights of stairs.(not complaining too loudly dear daughter who has taken her Mother in).

See how quickly I can avoid the subject at hand!

Here goes…for Week 15 of 52 in my desire to move from the Mother Mary to Mary Magdalene, I will create a profile of myself and post it on a singles dating website. ARGHHH…

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