The Lifecycle of a Woman

Women Trash Objects
Image: Dana, by Gregg Segal

They start us young. The manufacturing stage. We are small. Impressionable. Ideal for conditioning. They give us Barbie dolls. Plastic babies. Makeshift kitchens. They dress us in pink sparkles and dainty little slippers.

“How pretty,” they say.

Then, the word teen. It comes so fast. We are ready for distribution. The attention is fierce. It comes from everywhere. Even places it shouldn’t.

Boys. Jobs. And eventually, marriage. Babies. Careers. We are in-demand objects. Immersed in opportunity.

Fear penetrates us. We can’t walk anywhere without looking behind us. We are acutely aware of our surroundings. Everyone wants us. And, some just take what they want.

And then, it stops.

The opportunities fade. The attention vanishes. The fear remains, but now for different reasons. The wrinkles form. Our eyes. Our lips. The lines carved out over years of smiles. Of tears. They now just exist as a way to signify that we are too much. Or, not enough. Too much experience. Not enough beauty. Innocence. Newness.

We go on consignment. Some get a second chance. But, for most the time passes. We end up discarded in the dumpster behind the store.

But wait. We still hold value. We have more to offer. Years, in fact. It doesn’t matter though. In the eyes of the consumer, we are done. There are new products to explore.

We still need to decompose. This takes time. So, we sit. We wait. We watch. The next shipment of goods is ready.

Let’s hope they get more use. They probably won’t. Soon they too will end up here.

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