April 4/365 Agnes

Little girls need old women. Agnes lived across the street, catty-corner, from our house. She served as the neighborhood watch, peering out her window, keeping track of potential criminal activity. But when I visited, she opened her door, poured glasses of milk, set out the cookies, and listened. Every May Day, I left wild flowers at her door.


12 thoughts on “April 4/365 Agnes

    • I haven’t even read the article yet, but already I am bristling at the assumption that all post-menopausal women are grandmothers. (So I appreciate your wording, if not The Atlantic’s.)


      • Not that I want you to bristle, but the theory suggests children with grandmothers are more likely to survive to reproduce, carrying that longevity gene into the future.


      • I quickly read the article, and my take was that these grandmothers were those ancient humanoids that allowed for our branch of the primate tree to develop bigger brains, etc. So not humans now, and definitely not from a stage of our evolution when having children is a conscious decision. I’m not a paleoanthropologist, so I have no idea what role females had outside of the child-rearing end of the equation. Jane Goodall probably knows, but I can only imagine matriarchal family groups with post-menopausal females rejoicing in their freedom from being expected to procreate!


    • Kim, I like your optimism, but throughout history, women who aren’t mothers (or hence, grandmothers) either share in the work of raising the children (which is something we have lost in our fiercely nuclear family-centric societies in the 20th and 21st centuries), and/or are shunned because of their inability to procreate. I look forward to the day when women are freed from the expectations to procreate! Sigh. Though of course, these days many of us do indeed revel in our freedoms resulting from our lack of offspring.


    • I have to slow down my reading. I first thought you wrote “gin” instead of “gum!” And I immediately added, “And Indigo should have grown up on your block!. 😉


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