Let the beauty we love

be what we do.

There are a million ways to kneel

 
 

And kiss the ground.

~Rumi~

There are so many great things about being a woman of this certain age – what stretches out in front of us are our most creative years.

Every woman is creative. There is always something that she is doing that is steeped in creative process, and usually, there is more than just one thing.

We tend to look for the obvious when it comes to creativity: painting, quilting or writing. But there are other forms as well, different from art and crafts.

Do you see yourself as creative? If you don’t paint or make quilts, do you recognize your creative tendencies? Here’s my list of creative types who don’t fall into the category of art, and yet are real artists:

The Cook

The cook is part alchemist and part Queen of the Harvest. She prepares that which physically and emotionally nurtures you. Have you ever met a good cook who wasn’t motivated by the expression of loving others through the act of feeding them?

The Observer

A friend of mine had a series of medical treatments in front of her. Each day, as she walked to her appointment, she took pictures of flowers with her phone. At the end of the day she posted them on Facebook.

I couldn’t help but see the metaphor of healing as unfolding blossoms. A keen eye had captured the beauty that surrounded her at a challenging time. This draw to observe the world and name it in words or in pictures is beautifully creative.

The Flexibility Coach

Do you know a yoga teacher or a Pilate’s coach? What incredibly creative people! These teachers, in working with aging bodies that may be challenged by arthritis or old injury, still find ways to help the body articulate, flex and strengthen.

Even though my arthritic back won’t move in the way that it used to, my teacher finds ways to stretch and tone my somewhat compromised musculature allowing my life to be virtually free of pain.

The Librarian

One of the great privileges of my 60s is that I get to sit on the board of the University library. Each month when the board meets, we are led by a dynamic president who knows how to motivate and inspire. How does she get so much business done in so short a time?

Our meetings never go over the allotted hour. She is a creative magician who has taken the experience of her life’s work and now gives it in service to her community. You can find these creative types running all kinds of non-profits and boards in their community.

The Gardener

Some people might call gardening a hobby, but gardening is really a contemplative art form. The Queens of the Growing Lands bring beauty with flowers and sustenance with food.

Carefully tended beds whose blossoms radiate a cause for appreciation easily seduce one. And rows of tomatoes, chard and beans are, in my estimation anyway, the real importance and pulse of life.

The Bookkeeper

The mysteries of the universe are written in numbers. There is a beauty to mathematics and how it unlocks the secrets of eternity. I may wax philosophical, but the woman who keeps my books is no less a wizard than Gandalf.

She puts things in rows and columns, in order and in form so that at the end of the day, it all makes sense. Mathematicians are highly creative beings working from a different side of their brain.

Every one of us is creative. We mirror the creative life force that is all around us and in us. Embracing our creativity is a way of saying that we want to stay curious, to learn, to be open and amazed by each other and ourselves. Embracing our creativity is nothing less than stating “I love being alive.”

I know that I am surrounded by creative women on Sixty and Me. My deepest wish is that you see how creative you all are in your life.

So, tell me, what kind of creative person are you? Do you find joy in the expression of sculpting or in your kitchen? Are you creative in math and logistics, or does your creativity come from your ability to tell stories to your grandchildren? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

Stephanie RaffelockStephanie Raffelock is a novelist and a blogger. In her Sixty and Me column, she explores writing, living fully and loving well. She enjoys literary representation by Dystel, Goderich and Bouret in New York. You can find Stephanie at StephanieRaffelock.com or Tweet her @Sraffelock.

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