Wednesday 23 February 2011

An inspirational woman

I have this piece of writing sitting around as a draft since a while, and after having elaborated on my opinion in regard to beauty yesterday,  it feels just right to finish it now. I saw this woman for the first time in a drawing. A painter who I adore had used her as a model. I was so fascinated by the face that I investigated further, found her name and then Google exploded: Just try Carmen Dell'Orefice and google for images.

Why her? There are so many others who changed how we see the world, like Mother Teresa, Jane Goodall or Dian Fossey. I do admire them, I do get inspired by them, but I feel so small compared to what they have achieved. Never will I be able to reach their potential.

So, what is so different about this woman who is just a model, the most vivid depiction of superficial?

She is still there at age 79. She is making her living in a job where age matters, and she still is a supermodel. It shows that beauty is not just an outer layer. Grace is a word often used in context with her name.

See, at almost 50 I am starting to ask myself if I will still be able to achieve what I want. I have so many ideas and wishes and most of them rank around performances and creative stuff. However vain this may sound,  I am longing for a bit of publicity, I'd like to cause a bit of a stir here and there. I didn't choose that as my life's dream from a shop shelf. It came to me quite naturally, and as things are now as they are, it would be quite useful to have a body in good working order with a certain appeal to go with it. And occasionally it feels like running out of time.

You may wonder why on earth I am aspiring to doing all this now, and not some decades ago when age wouldn't have been an issue. Well, interests change:

I will never forget when my mum asked me at age 10 or 12 if I would like to have a subscription of a fashion magazine as one of those traders were at our doorstep. She meant so well and I declined; I feel bad about it now. Money was short at our house and this offer was of an extraordinary treat. I even remember what I did when she asked. It was a searing hot summer and I was weeding the roses in our garden. I guess that I remember so well, shows how touched I was by this gesture, but I was so little into fashion that I declined nevertheless. And today I would kill for becoming a model or being able to design my own fashion... Will I be able to still achieve it?... Of course I will... If I really want to, I will! And this woman shows me that there doesn't have to be an age limit for any business!

And although she is very beautiful, and always was, this is not what makes her success. It is her charisma and her style which make her later pictures even much more powerful than the younger ones, and which have been radiating even from the painting I saw. It is confidence that wins the game for her, and this is not something one has, or has not. It can be gained! It is the confidence that inspires. Well, probably that is what I am actually after: If I could inspire only one person to achieve something they never thought possible... That would be a legacy, wouldn't it? And the age thing? Well, if we could take age out of the equation, then we would gain time. This woman shows that one is never too old to do anything. Only the sky is the limit!

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