You’d be surprised if you knew how many women over fifty I’ve met who find themselves alone in their later years, like me. We didn’t choose our path, but isn’t it funny how things work out sometimes? Well okay, funny isn’t exactly the right word. I’ll say ‘interesting’. But I’ve enjoyed connecting with these women and putting them in contact with others like us. It’s like weaving a hand-holding bridge across the loneliness….or like weaving a tapestry. Every woman is different, each with her own story, each with some pain and some glory in her past. Like our pastor said, if we look at the back of the tapestry (or from below as in his analogy), we see all of the hanging threads and crisscrossing chaos of colors. But the whole of it, from above is beautiful: You can see the picture, how it’s all supposed to come together. He was talking about our perspective of our lives versus that of God; but if I apply that analogy to my golden girlfriends, it fits. Each of us has a mess of crisscrossing threads, jumbled together and in no way resembling a picture at all. Threads of love, threads of joy, threads of pain, of fun and laughter, of tears, of life…we all have them all. But our group picture, viewed head on, and as a whole, is quite beautiful. This is one way to turn something painful into something wonderful: Reach out and touch others along the same journey. I’ve been absolutely amazed at the depth of love and compassion I have encountered and isn’t that what we all seek on this earth? Isn’t that one of God’s greatest gifts to us? Each of these women has wisdom, love, spiritual gifts, knows the face of real pain, and has an idea of how to survive against all odds. Amazing how all of us tell much the same story…with a common thread of God woven throughout.