Still a dreamer…Old Memories and New Hopes

Archive for the ‘changes’ Category

What I Used To Do….What I Do Now

I really don’t spend a lot of time and energy thinking of what I used to do There are too many “what I do now”. I did love to cook, and also played golf. Both are in my past. I have discovered that if someone can make a meal better, let them. I have also discovered if I want to eat oatmeal for dinner, who’s going to stop me? Of course my oatmeal is an entire meal. Oats, crunchy almond butter. golden berries, cinnamon, variety of nuts and fruits. My favorite is a one meal dish. I can eat on a pretty basket in bed watching Netflix. Another favorite is an omelet with veggies. Of course all organic…My big thing to actually make is wild salmon or any cold water wild fish. The easiest way is on top of the stove in a covered pan. It never comes out wrong. Another tip. When you have a container with overflowing greens that would take a month to eat, just put in a pan with a tiny amount of olive oil and saute. It ends up as a tablespoon of green good health. I’ve gotten to the stage where marketing is annoying. One or two items fine, but why do I end up feeling like I’m carrying 50 lbs of things that I have to wash and put away. Hope this doesn’t sound like I’m complaining. I’m not, and would never, not when I can get up and out, and never think of the age thing. It seems everyone else thinks it’s some kind of miracle to be a certain age, and still be breathing, let alone standing on my head, yoga, weights, and walking, jazz concerts, Carnegie Hall, films, Lincoln Center, Manhattan Theater Club and just about anything with a positive vibe.
Global News Brazil came to my apartment on Monday, and we had an interesting, fun interview for Stitch. I asked two Stitch members…. Women who are evolved and fantastic. I hope it went well. You never know with editing etc. I mentioned my children and grandchildren will see the tape and I just want to come across with dignity. My son was funny and said to smile. (meaning don’t talk too much.) This interview was for a show that has to do with dealing with aging. I asked if there could be no labels. I’m a woman first and foremost.My purpose is to inspire others and always has been. My other purpose is to leave a legacy for family. Wisdom is paramount to pass on, and when I can, I certainly try. So I said to please not use words like senior, golden years, old, octogenarian, and so many others. In another interview I said vintage is good..It’s value increases with age. When I think of Maggie Smith, Susan Sarandon, Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin, Cecily Tyson, Angela Lansbury, Dame Helen Mirren, Dame Judy Dench , Bette Midler, Barbara Streisand, Tina Turner……the list goes on and on. My point being, I can think of so many words to describe these magnificent women, and their age is not necessarily one of them. I’m not ashamed of my age. I’m quite proud, but I don’t want to be defined by a number. Coco Chanel ” You can be gorgeous at thirty, charming at forty, and irresistible for the rest of your life.”
Had a crew here Monday. Two women producers, and a camera lighting guy. All terrific and received email from the News Producer saying we were inspirational. Now that’s a label I would love to keep.
Satchel Paige said it best. “How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you were?”

FINALLY

So finally a decision was made about our book. I have a co-author, and we have been writing our book for over 35 years. My husband encouraged us from the beginning to “go for it” and finish. We didn’t. When he died my co-author said ” we are going to finish for Barry”. We  did. A 90,000 word women’s humor fiction novel.  I love this book. I love the concept and the friendship between these two characters, and they are characters.

We went  through the process of trying to find an agent and then a publisher. We had one agent, sort of, who liked the book and sadly  died before she had a chance to take to  publisher. Although the book was written by the two of us, if not for Barbara, the book would have never been in any shape to show anyone. She was an editor and knew how. I can  write, but going on Word is a Process unknown to me, sorry to say. To make this story short, we received only about seven rejections, but that was enough for Barbara to reverse gears. The book sat for quite a while. Several agents said it would make a good movie….now even more so because of great parts for women over 50. It is not against men …How could it be when I had an extraordinary husband, two fantastic loving sons, two awesome grandsons and two great nephews. It’s a fun read with a happy ending.

The publishing business is not an easy one to crack being first time authors. Both of us have been published, but this is our first book. Self publishing always had a stigma, but then a self publisher won the Pen Award and the stigma no more. It’s a way of getting your work, hopefully read, and then you never know. It’s magical thinking of course, but like everything else, something wonderful could be in the future with “our baby.”

To let query letters sit on a desk somewhere or wait a few months to hear yes or no, is just too frustrating and we decided to publish on Kindle as an e-book and Create Space as the print copy…The name of our book is Circle. Please stay tuned since I will be posting  this process.

Having  head shots taken for the cover next week and that should be exciting. We are now changing the ending and receiving copies back from the editor with all the mistakes we knew we never made.

This is our time. This is Circles time. This is a fun and exciting time.

One word of caution to my family….and  friends, past and present. No questions as to how much is from life and  how much is imagination.

Keep tuned………………………………

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Aging

If good health allows it, four words  to follow…..Don’t think about it!!!!!! A young Twitter follower once tweeted. Age is just a number, not a limitation. Selective memory becomes very important and denial is way up on the list as well. Living in the moment should become your mantra……..”Age is a case of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it don’t matter.” Satchel Paige

“It takes a long time to become young.” Pablo Picasso

Changes

We are faced with changes every day, and how we deal with those changes can make or break us. Simple ones like summer to fall. Serious changes like loss. Happy ones like additions. Some of us think that everything happens for a reason. People come into your life and out of your life for lessons. Mistakes are not failures if positive changes happen. Experiences can enhance our lives, and we need to exalt in the simple things…Able to get up and out and do what we like, and be with the people we enjoy. Taking for granted as we get older is never an option and the younger you are when you realize this, the better. Personally, being grateful is paramount to feeling  alive. Living in New York City is sheer joy for me because I am  surrounded by creative  energy and diversity. I do stay away from the age thing, but denial can go just so far. Reality does exist. I do believe in realistic rainbows. I love the colors, but not looking for the pot of gold. Creating my own filled with loving family and friends.  My reality is not reading the depressing news, but knowing as in golf, I am on the back nine. Not so bad…….to still be in the game, although I haven’t played in ten years. Golf is very much like life. “A contract that your mind makes with your body, that your body has no intention of fulfilling.”….but that one great shot is worth it all. You never own the game, but you can still find the pleasure.                             “Gratitude changes the pangs of memory into tranquil joy.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer

A Lifetime Ago

Ten years ago today, my life as I knew it was over. I had choices, and made the choice to leave New Jersey where I lived with my wonderful husband and move to New York City. I re-created myself, not easy to do. Barry, I know you would be  proud of me. I am forever grateful for what was and what is now.

That’s Life…It is what it is and it is what it isn’t….

Perhaps it has to do with the holidays, perhaps it has to do with being alone, perhaps it has to do with the end of something, perhaps it has to do with no new beginnings in sight. Who knows what really causes one to feel down. I hesitate to use the word depressed, because it is so overused. TV commercials galore boasting of this pill or that pill to lift your depression. My brother has been a psychiatrist for over 50 years and he has always said that there are no happy pills, and most suffer from what they consider to be an unhappy life, or the inability to deal with life, and there are no pills for that ailment. What they are? Mood elevators, as he put it “life still sucks, but you can deal with it.” I have chosen another road when feeling down or sad. I chant, go down the good stuff list, get out and about. But, then again there are those times that you just have to let it in and hope for a quick exit.

Sadness arrives, and if your emotional tools kick in… it passes. I know women who are alone, and prefer it to the unhappy marriages they had. One woman, when I was on a hotline, told me she was more alone when she was married. Everyone suffers occasionally I am sure from feeling low, no matter how long your grateful list is. For me, when I am down, the one void on my not so grateful list overtakes all the good stuff, and then I have to reign it all in, and work on myself. I never chose therapy. My family and friends as I have said so many times before, are my emotional transfusions..Most of the time I don’t bother my children because I have friends who feel exactly the same way, and we relate to one another, talk about it, cry about it, and then magically, but not really magic but hard work, it leaves. It lifts and the sun comes out again. I don’t numb myself with many pills or alcohol because I’m afraid of overusing. Not one to judge what works as long as it’s positive. Not against a little Xanax to sleep . So would a new love make everything all better. Sure, I would be happier to have another soul mate, but even though I still have hope, I don’t obsess about it. I need to live the life I have and relish in the things I have. We can never ever take good health for granted. So good health, thankfully, nourishing family and friends, and living in, for me, the best city in the world. So now you have it, I started this post in a funk and already feel better. A friend wants me to audition to do a one woman act and sent me the information. I have to decide by January 3, and one minute I think “why not, if not now when?”
…and then I think “have you lost your mind?” I haven’t decided, just thinking about what material I would do. 35 years ago Jack Rollins wanted to sign a woman comic, and a writer I was working with at the time on material, wanted to do it. She was the one who got us the meeting. I was in my early 40’s and didn’t think I wanted to be a stand up comic. My jobs at the time…. wife, mother and volunteering. We went to the Jane Street Cafe since that was where we were going to perform. It never happened because I wasn’t going to take a risk. Mr. Rollins soon signed Paula Poundstone. He was a gentle man and a gentleman with great class and kindness. In every Woody Allen film, he is listed as Executive Producer. He is about 98. I have no regrets about that decision, but this new opportunity? Maybe I would have regrets for not trying, and there are no guarantees I would be chosen. One has to audition, and you have to be over 40. That is one requirement I can say with certainty I fit in. So whoever took the time to read , I would like the message to be life affirming. .Not about sadness, but about living in the moment with joy. I wish all a Healthy Happy New Year and may 2014 be filled with joys galore….and some dreams actually coming true.

My Non Fifteen Minutes of Fame

Many years ago I wrote to Linda Wells, editor- in-chief Allure Magazine. In “those days” they had the usual what do women wear, or whatever at a certain age. 20’s 30’s 40’s….and then it seemed the rest of the women drop off the earth. Obviously demographically undesirable. At the time I knew women in their 60’s to 90’s who were driving, playing golf, actively looking for “gentlemen” and quite interesting and beautiful. So, I wrote a letter, no email then and suggested she might stretch the hints and tips from women older than 40. I said I would be interested in skin creams etc, foods, and secrets they might share. She wrote me back a lovely letter, and said she would pass on to a senior editor. I never heard, but Vogue several months later did an issue that went up to 60. I could literally go down a list of fabulous beautiful sexy woman in their 60’s to 90’s…but sure you all have your own favorites. Do we not really matter anymore? Why in Europe are women of all ages respected and admired. I met one unforgettable fantastic woman in a French cafe waiting for her lunch date. Her English was halting, but she was able to tell me her scent that was fabulous. It was Sublime, sadly not Made in France anymore. When her lunch date arrived, he was about 50 and he whispered to us that we were in the company of Madame…..and unfortunately I don’t remember her name. He said she was 93 and a legend in Paris. Oh why didn’t I write down her name instead of just jotting Sublime. To get to the point of this post. I have written to The View, Joy Behar, Katie Couric, and Bethenny Frankel,not to have me on the show, but to have women of all ages talking about interesting topics including themselves. Barbara Walters is about 84, and rarely has anyone of her generation on the show. When Joy left, so did I. If you notice, when late night has much older women as guests, it may be a 87-year-old with a 28-year-old boyfriend, or learning the hula hoop or now the twerk. Well, miracles happen. I heard from a producer from the Bethenny Frankel show. Just a guess, but I thought she might be under 25 and said she enjoyed talking to me. I sounded funny. Could I be on the show Friday. This was on a Wednesday. Before I could ask what the topic of discussion would be since I never read the “grey” book, she said it was going to be a great show. If I could come on with my daughter or daughter in law and granddaughter, it would be a three generation makeover. That immediately did not appeal to me at all. I am not interested in a makeover. I very much like my hair style, my not too much makeup, and overall way of dressing, and I could only imagine what the before would look like. Very easily with bad lighting or just in the morning, I could pass for 96. Not interested in showing myself in the worst way on national television. This is a secret I am keeping from my granddaughter since she would probably have loved the experience. I was gracious, and said no thank you, but if they would ever like me to discuss what it is like being single in NYC at 78, I would be happy to be in on that discussion. Or volunteering in women’s issues and some of the experiences I had with women to frightened to stay and more frightened to leave, or the process of writing a book with a co-author and then trying to get a publisher or agent….so many topics to discuss, so little interest I guess. She ended the conversation with “oh my boss is calling, I need to call you back.” So did you hear from her??? Ummmmm now I wonder if I would look better with red curly hair instead of blond straight hair, false eyelashes instead mascara free, foundation, instead of tinted moisturizer. Very proper clothes instead of creative dress…….. Oh well, I’ll never know.

Twitterland/The Land of Twitter

  • Once upon a time, I knew of a land called Twitter. I also knew I would never venture into such a strange and unfamiliar place. I had preconceived ideas that it was a land mostly inhabited by teenagers and celebrities tweeting about what they ate and when they went some place, any place. I also knew that most of them had assistants doing their tweeting. In March I started my blog and went on Facebook. April, my birthday month, was when I took the risk of going on Twitter, still thinking it was foolish on my part. How wrong I was. Not only does the world become a smaller place, the Twitter world can also be a very gentle place, overflowing with people who think and feel as you do….about all that matters to you. The connections can be quite heartfelt, and common bonds with those of all ages, (not mine though) all colors, and from all parts of the world and country. At times the connections become so meaningful that email addresses are exchanged as well. I am proud to say that this day brought my 500th follower…Bill from Buffalo and I thank him for following me. All my followers are mutually chosen, and I am not really interested in buying followers which can be done. A definite smile moment when everyday the element of surprise enters my morning. Might be a new follower, a RT or a fave…because my words are appreciated, I have received enormous validation. What was once an alien world has become my neighborhood. Try it, you might like it. I send again to all my followers, a sincere thank you, and for making me feel so welcomed. Foolishness? Not at all…Meaningful…you bet!
  • Reasons

    People come in and out of our lives for reasons…. and so many lessons to be learned.

    Quality vs Quantity….who knows for sure?

    Very often, observing, not judging, you see marriages lasting over 50 years. Perhaps morphing into a lovely companionship. Physically who knows? The bonus would be intimacy into your 90’s. I just know I would have had the bonus, but then again, who knows? The same with friends. You may have friends for over 50 years, but years may change your circumstances, and unless the friendship has more than longevity, it might be time to let go. Emotional cleansing, I have always said, is just as important as physical cleansing. When my husband died so suddenly, and I could no longer stay in New Jersey with all my memories, I moved to New York. As I wrote in my Garden of Friendship blog, there are times you let go. Knowing for sure why!