Woe Be Gone

by Rose Williamson

I have just realized that nobody wants to hear about my life story, sad though I think it might be, nor do they care about how brave I think I am some mornings just for getting out of bed. I discovered this chilling fact after searching diligently for a magazine to print my article. I soon came to realize there isn't a single magazine entitled "Woe 'R Us" much less one dedicated to the pursuit of tales about old chicks with sad pasts.

Now I wonder if all the angst I nurtured while writing my story has much meaning in the context of this "Get-a-Grip" sort of world. I think I must have wasted all those mournful, introspective pauses, and the article I eventually gave birth to immediately became a red-haired stepchild in a world of blond beauties. So what did I gain by investing my time and energy in reviewing my life, other than learning it is of little interest to others?

I learned that I am still here. I have learned that you can get things wrong three or four times before you get them right. I have learned that some things I may never get right. I have learned that some of the stuff that makes me sad doesn't really belong to me and that I need to let those people that do own it carry it themselves. I have grown into a woman who has a career, and a loving husband (no matter that it took me three tries to find him). I feel OK (most of the time) about not having children of my own. I take responsibility for being fatter than I fantasize about; after all, I ate it, and you didn't. I can't change the genes that gave me a circulatory system that romances heart failure on a regular basis, and really wouldn't want to since those same genes are the ones that connect me to a family that loves me in spite it all.

So yes, I am still here. I know that I have been more fortunate than many who have had much less adversity to shape and fuel their strength. I don't know what tomorrow will be all about, but then neither do you. I don't know a lot about your past, and just like you, I probably don't care to know more than I do. We meet today and will either like or be indifferent to each other based on what we see and sense rather than due to the credentials of our pasts. Yes, the past is a piece of us, but will it do any good to wave it like a flag and announce, "You must like me better because I got a raw deal way back when"? The past is just one of the ingredients in the recipe we have become, not the entire finished product.

I have finally come to realize that my raw deal wasn't the whole deal. I am so much more.

This article and others in Real Life are sponsored by Julia
Wilkinson, author of Moxie's "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire" and the book "My Life at AOL" which is available at http://www.amazon.com or

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