I’m Taking Crone Back


So, tomorrow is my birthday.



I seriously have no idea how I got here. For all that is holy, I swear, all I did was blink a few times.

I have not accomplished nearly what I thought I would and so much more than I ever dreamed. I have tried to control my surroundings for years and life cut through that shit like a hot knife through butter.

I like getting older. I mean, menopause is fucking bullshit, but I like getting older.

I feel the same in my head as I have since before we were wearing Member’s Only jackets and LA Gear sneaks with neon shoestrings. I’ve just had time to work shit out.

Life is better the more I sort the shit out in my head.

As time passes, I realize am I more than I’ve given myself credit for. I understand that I’ve been afraid of the wrong things. It’s nice to believe in myself. It would be nice to let go of the fear, though.

I spend an inordinate amount of time talking myself out of being negative or crazy.

I’m good with this. I think the path I am taking is difficult. I make life more difficult than it needs to be, but I am moving forward. That at least earns me a participation award.

As I move forward, I realize that “Crone” has a bad reputation.

What’s so bad about being a crone? So, we are getting older? Who cares? Getting old isn’t for pussies, but if you get through the hard parts, the rewards are amazing.

Why is it when women age, we are supposed to fall into some neat categories?

Kindly, fluffy haired grandma who knows her way around a rolling pin. Crazy, lonely woman with too many cats. The I'm Taking Crone Backdoting matriarch who can dispense wise advice while whipping up a turkey dinner with all the trimmings from scratch. Including two kinds of pie.

What about the grandmas who know their way around rolling papers? What about the body builders and the dreamers and the lovers? I mean, how are we represented in entertainment? Bitter, controlling, and desperate to stay young or Aunt Bea from Mayberry.

I guess we did get Gemma Teller. It would be nice to have a hot granny on television who isn’t a psychotic nutjob with homicidal tendencies who eventually gets snuffed by her only living child. But hey, progress is progress.

We all have a voice. I had a voice when I was young. Or at least I wanted to have one. Mostly it was lost behind fear and self doubt. My voice was tight, quiet, and could be silenced with a glance. I’m finding it now. Just because I’m finding it later, doesn’t mean it’s too late.

We need to take crone back. Maybe, get some bumper stickers. Crone Power! Crone is the new sexy. Get your crone on. Or a new saying like “A throne fit for a crone” or “Everything’s coming up crones”. I honestly don’t even know what that means, but I like it anyway.

Also, I really want some pie now. Where is a goddamn kindly grandma when you need one?





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  • First πŸ™‚ happy happy early birthday. I swear I think after I cruised through 40 I might struggle with 50. Or I would kick it’s ass as I did 40. I was wrong πŸ™‚ 46 has sucked, BUT I am stealing your attitude. I will take crone back with you now and a side dish of Justin Timberlake please too.

  • I’m never going to be the lovely grannie whipping up pie or throwing the turkey in the oven for the whole family to chow down on. I’m struggling with smiling about going to a baby shower for my own grandchild-to-be (what’s with all the gift scooping up that happens now days? The kid’s not even born yet!) Anyhoo – if there is a bumper sticker celebrating doing my own thing and not really giving a stuff about anyone else, I’ll have one please!

  • A very happy early birthday! I have enjoyed my fifties, a lot of discovery happening this decade. I have always been fascinated with the maiden, mother, crone cadence of life. It is never too late to find one’s voice! May your birthday be filled with all good things and cake or pie, or both!

  • Happy B’day!!!
    And I understand *all* this. Except the MENopause. I had, and continue to go though CRANKYopause. And complaining about the government. (My ‘perks’ in old age.)


  • Happy birthday. I hit 61 just a couple of weeks ago myself, and I have no idea where the time went. But I relish where I am — my childhood was a nightmare: parents who were narcissists in the clinical sense of the term, one of whom was harsh, belittling, and mocking (who walked out when I was only two), the other, an emotional vampire/terrorist, both physically and emotionally abusive (she landed me in an emergency room twice — after that she didn’t stop, she just got more careful).

    I divorced them both a long, long time ago, realizing they were never going to the parents they should have been, and I was as much relieved as sad when they died.

    I’m very happy getting older, because the farther away I get from my childhood, the better.

    I like to refer to myself as a “totally bitchin’ broad” — although “totally bitchin’ crone” could work.

    • I LOVE totally bitchin crone!!

      I’m sorry you had that kind of life..but it is encouraging to hear from people who have come out on the other side. There is always hope.

  • *holding Terri Lee’s free hand*
    β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ
    Happy Birthday!!
    β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ β™ͺβ™ͺ
    That’s the best singing and tambourine you’re going to get all day πŸ™‚
    I have visions of me on a craggy hill in front of the entrance to my cave with the wind blowing my grey hair back. One hand on my pointed stick and one hand on my goat while we whistle for the horse….
    *looks at snoring husband in recliner*
    Ah well, Happy Birthday to you πŸ™‚

  • Advice on menopause: I found that acupuncture got rid of the symptoms, except for the brain fog! Needed treatment three or four times a year; medication helped with brain fog, which was due to, among other things, an underacting thyroid.

  • While I’m a few years younger, my daughter turns 21 next week. So I’m having some of these same thoughts. 25 to 48 went in the flash of a Polaroid land camera. I will happily join you in the effort to take it back!

  • It’s so funny because when my doctor diagnosed me wth “Crohn’s”, I decided I would ignore him and just say I actually have “Crones”. I like that it sounds more powerful and gives the control back to ME. πŸ˜€

    Not to get all religion-y or anything, but at one time, women were more revered and respected. The pagan religions were matriarchal in nature, with the early stages of a woman’s life “Maiden” and “Mother”. As a woman aged, she became the Wise Woman, the Crone, who dispensed healing and advice in the village. Enter Christianity and the emergence of patriarchal dominance. Woman suddenly was looked upon as evil and the root of all sin in the world. This is where the image of the crone emerges as “witch”. It’s time to take our power BACK and raise our voices in unity! “All hail the CRONE!!”

    *shaking my tambourine and dancing about wildly*
    *Ouch!* Haha! “Lisa K., can you hand me the heating pad?”

    And a very happy birthday to you, Michelle! You are going to put your unique stamp on 53! Show them how it’s done, baby! XO

      • Blessed Be… The Heating Pad!
        *hands Terri Lee a microwaved bean bag*
        Here, Doll, I love that behind the back and under the leg move you do with your tambourine!
        These will come in handy in the cave … After we figure out the open flame heating method…
        My favorite was the un-protested commitment to the crazy house.
        Medicine women, hags, witches, crones, and the ever endearing bitches have survived men, most religions and Christianity.
        Call me what you want, I’ve lived up to most of the titles, anyway, but it still boils down to, “Here I am. Bigger and Better than before!”
        (like a bacteria… We are immune! πŸ™‚
        *grabs another microwaveable heating pack*

        • *places bean bag on neck and shoulders*

          Aaaahhh, thank you, my Partner In Crone! πŸ™‚

          I know I’ve also lived up to most of the titles they “bestow” on women. As a woman maneuvers herself through the obstacle course that is life, it’s difficult to avoid it. Lisa, I do love your analogy of women and bacteria! We DO kind of grow on people after a while! HAHA! I always said that if people were like movies, I’d probably be more of a cult classic instead of a commercially successful blockbuster. More Rocky Horror Picture Show than Rocky. Haha! I don’t expect my Crone years to be any different.

          *handing bean bag back to Lisa as I don my kimono*

  • Funny, just yesterday I was thinking of taking “matron” back. Or “matronly”. Power matron. Like a power ranger only your weapon is a transforming chatelaine. Just thinking.

  • I plan to rock 50 so hard in a few (OK, two) years. My Drummer Boy turns 53 later this year. We’ve known each other for more than 25 years, but I really think we’ve only become our best selves since getting “old.” You rock whatever age you are, because you’re simply fabulous. P.S. Crones can make pie, too. Give it a try. πŸ˜‰

  • Happy Birthday! I’m finding 53 – interesting – in a transformational way. My birthday lasted a month (because it could), the transformational bit is ongoing. Not sure where it’s going, but something is definitely happening…. So far it has involved exercising a lot and a buying myself a looong fake fur stole (not at the same time). I intend being a strong and glamorous crone! I hope you keep enjoying your path.

  • Cronalicious! Love it. And happy third year of your sixth decade! Menopause dies a hard death but does sputter out finally. And it’s much smoother sailing after that. As you say getting older is not for chickens. Thanks once more for a belly laugh!

  • Happy Birthday! I love your blog, Michelle! The reference to Gemma Teller had me laughing my ass off this morning. I got my motorcycle license and first Harley when I was 53! I am about to turn 60 next month and feeling great. It really helps to not give a shit what people think anymore. Some guy made a rude comment about my dog on my lap while I was driving past him and I immediately yelled “FUCK YOU”. Ha Ha. I would never have done that in my youth. So here’s to you, your awesome birthday celebration and your awesome words that make me laugh and cry. Power to the Crone!

  • I think we should make crone a verb that describes all the great stuff we can do and be as we get older, as in “I’m gonna crone your world” or “Just crone it!” in reply to a question about how to do something. Happy birthday to you…one of the best things about getting older is that sense of feeling more comfortable in your own skin–even if it is more wrinkled.

  • Happy Birthday and you’re awesome, old lady. Which you’re not. You’re like this awesome ageless creature, with superpowers, and unlimited supply of fuck words.
    Like a fairy that made peace with profanity πŸ™‚

  • Happy Birthday to you!
    I’m an old crone, too, and act nothing like what an almost 60 yr old. I’m talking major road trips all over the UK to visit stone circles. I’m talking Summer Solstice at Stonehenge every year. Glastonbury Tor and Glastonbury Abbey, checking out the surfer boys in Cornwall with my partner. Still going to heavy metal concerts, rock concerts, all kinds of concerts and festivals of all sorts with my youngest daughter (26). We always have a cool time. Me, I ain’t never gonna get old! High time to get that ‘Throne for a Crone’ :-))

  • Love this – and the comments really made my day!!!

    Unfortunately I have the “song – “Send in the crones” stuck in my head now… (send in the clowns) but just that line over and over because it’s all I can remember. Sigh.

    It’s going to be a long day…

  • My ideal is the cartoon character “Maxine”. She epitomizes the best of being a Crone. I was going to say that I wanted to be Maxine when I grow up, but at 66 I’m pretty well up there already……and I hope that I’m a little like her. Have a wonderful Birthday (drink one for me) and look forward with enthusiasm to being “attitudinal” – another crone feature!

  • So I guess the male equivalent to crone would be what? (Uh oh, have I uncovered another double-standard?) Geezer? Codger? I was being teased about being a codger before I turned 30. Now I’m 55, and despite my protests that I’m “too old for this shit”, still behaving as irresponsibly as ever. Well, not quite. But almost. I mean we’re staying at a friend’s house in Richmond and preparing to hit the road today to go visit another friend up by Yosemite… We’d be in a hell of a spot were it not for a couple of turns of good luck last year, and that spot is what I protest about being too old for, really. So thank Dr. Huang at Highland and my dead father (and my live, awesome sister) that I’m not blind or broke, and thus able to carry on as I do…
    When I was a kid, the saying was “don’t trust anyone over 30”. Now, among my friends, it’s more like “be careful around anyone under 40”. Funny how many things reverse on you as you age.

    • Hahaha…it is funny how the perspective changes.

      I don’t know what the opposite of crone is..I don’t know that there is one. I’m glad you had some turns of good luck. πŸ™‚

  • Congratulations on making life more difficult than it needs to be. I mean that. When you do that you’re saying, “Is that the best you can do, life? Give me some fuckin’ lemons and I’ll give you a mango smoothie and make you suck it up.”
    Yeah, I know it hasn’t been easy but in lieu of a real birthday present I’m offering my admiration for how you’ve dealt with the crises you’ve faced.
    And you’re gonna be a killer crone.

  • Yes to taking crone back. Smooth skin??? pshaw! I have the upper arms of a wrinkly shar pei puppy and people think they are cute. So when I am in downward facing dog on the yoga mat and see my wrinkly skin I think – power to the old lady doing downward facing dog.
    That’s me!

    And power to you – as I said before you are gonna rock 53. and 54. and 55. and and and!

  • Happy Early Birthday! I would love to be the Grandma with the pies and all, I enjoy being a crone because of course I am well into my dotage. Move over Maggie Smith!

  • Happy Birthday M!! I just can’t accept “cronage” at 53. Aren’t crones supposed to be wise old silver-haired ladies who have their shit together? I’m so far from that it’s not even on my horizon. The early fifties are known as menopause years… how boring. It just represents a load of difficulties, doesn’t even touch on anything positive. That’s probably why we feel like we need to reassert ourselves, toot our own horns, and flip a finger at just about everyone. Reminds me of the “tween” years when you’re not a little kid but you are light-years from cool teenagehood. These are periods of our lives when we seem to slip through the cracks. M, I think we might be in a crack. Hahahahaha! Oh look! There’s my bony, not-quite-a-crone’s middle finger rising up….slowly….slowly…towards the universe. (Hey! There’s good music in the crack, and alcohol…sweet!)

  • Happy Birthday Lovely Lady for today (or at least for today Down Under where it’s already tomorrow !!)
    Wishing you the CRONEIEST birthday EVER !!!!
    MENopause sucks big hairy balls at the moment – not aided by the increased sugar consumption – man I am so over this crap. But, I will continue to persevere and keep reading your blog where I know I will always click away with smile on my face if not a chuckle in my mouth !!!

  • Happy Birthday to an awesome, funny, wonderful, fascinating lady! Here’s to keep our voice, using it loudly and rocking our 50s, 60’s and way beyond! We are all Betty Whites in the end – sassy and marvelous!

  • ‘It would be nice to have a hot granny on television who isn’t a psychotic nutjob with homicidal tendencies who eventually gets snuffed by her only living child. ‘
    Ha ha ha ha, totally! We need more crones with attitude in the media.

    Hope you have a fabulous birthday and are spoiled rotten!

  • Happy Birthday. You’re a fucking infant! I’ll be 61 in April. Getting older is fine. Aging sucks. And it sucks because society–no thanks to fashion magazines, clothing companies, the cosmetics industry all but ignore the sage, wise, wrinkled and rippled beauty of the older and mature woman!

    I’ve written about this quite a few times and continue to place my incredibly small mark (more like a teeny dot) on exposing ageism. It’s the only “ism” that is shoved under the carpet.

    Stay strong my little sister–I am so damned happy I found your blog. And even happier that you use the same language that I do. Thank you!

    Seriously–have a wonderful birthday and an even better year!


  • Welcome to 53 – I’ve been there almost a year and, for the most part, I love it! I feel better physically now than I did 10 or even 20+ years ago (albeit I’m not quite as flexible and can’t run like I used to). I feel better mentally than I ever have before! The only thing I’m not wild about is all the sagging – boobs, ass, neck, all of my skin – and my legs! I noticed the other day that my legs are getting dimply – not from cellulite, but from the droop of age. I think we need to find a way to do away with the hot older chicks so that sagging becomes the norm and a highly desired trait (I mean, seriously – Christie Brinkley and her buds are ruining it for the rest of us!)

By Michelle


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