Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Welcome to your life...

Time and age can be cruel. Gravity seems like a good idea in general, but it is not actually your friend.

But, oh they can also be so generous.

Well, not gravity. Although I suppose it does keep us attached to God's green earth.

OK, they're all generous in their own way. Just maybe not to your cheeks (at both ends) and boobs and things.

One of my younger friends sent a tweet yesterday asking people's opinions on older guys "like 45+ and/or with gray hair" wearing Chuck Taylors.

I read it and laughed out loud. 

(I myself favor Jack Purcells, but don't have a pair. What I really want is a pair of Stan Smiths just like the ones I had in high school when I copied my friend Nicole. They were the best sneaks ever. But I cannot seem to find little ones. But I digress.)

I didn't respond because I thought the question itself was funny. And also, that's now my age bracket. And also also, I myself occasionally judge the shit out of young hipsters.

But most importantly: by this age, I wear what makes me happy, or what amuses me, or what's comfortable, or what was nearest when we were all running late and had to get out the door.

I know I've looked ridiculous before, in the name of amusement or comfort or ease. I do not mind. I am sure I will again.

When I was in high school my dad would wear white athletic or black office socks with clogs and shorts. I thought I was going to die of mortification when other people saw him, but he did not care. In fact, he may have enjoyed it more because of my horror.

He would also silly-walk down the halls of the embassy just to make me squirm. Or maybe it wasn't actually about me?

So you know I had this high school reunion a couple weeks ago.

And ever since I have been texting and emailing with friends about how much we love and miss each other. I've been looking at these reunion pictures like my children look at photos of themselves.

Ohh, so awesome! So beautiful! So funny! So pretty shiny sparkly!


Some of the hottest boys in high school. The upperclassmen to swoon over. Never in a million years when I was younger could I have imagined embracing them as real, whole, flawed and perfect, beautiful human beings and telling them I loved them, now and forever.

Never could I have imagined that they would see me as an entire person and love me right back. (Although truthfully, I think it took me longer than most to realize I was an entire person.)

So I've been chatting with one friend about how we didn't really know each other in Delhi. I mean, we were friends and he was gorgeous and oh, wow, but I didn't actually know him as a real person. And as we're developing this adult friendship, I realize how much more we had and have in common than I'd have guessed.

We are fucked up and we are perfect.  We are just like everyone else and we are unique. We are all amazing. Most important of all, we are loved.

And this is what I keep coming back to: love.

I am generous with love. Well, selectively generous. But generous nonetheless.

Nick chose me and I chose him back because I felt so good with him. I felt safe in being the real me. Not the me that I used to feel like I ought to be so that someone would love me.

And this is what I am slowly slowly working towards. In case you're wondering WHAT my point might be.

I am sorry to get all Bridget Jones on you. But here you go:

You are perfect just as you are. You do not have to be anyone but who you are for the right people.

The right people will embrace you because you wear your sparkly silver sneakers, or have cheesy taste in music, or have madly curly hair that will not be tamed, or blush a little too easily. Not in spite of these things.

I am writing this to the 20-somethings and 30-somethings. And perhaps the one teen (hi Carm!) who may read this. Aging is scary in some ways. But aging is beautiful and delicious and freeing.

Some of you are there already - so very far ahead of where I was. But if you aren't, I suspect you're in plenty of company. You are enough, and you are awesome. You are flawed and you are perfect.

You are amazing. We all are.


  1. These Stan Smiths were made just for you: http://www.adidas.com/us/product/womens-originals-stan-smith-up-shoes/IES24?cid=D65176

    1. Haha! I want THESE: http://www.adidas.com/us/product/mens-originals-stan-smith-shoes/ION05?cid=M20324&breadcrumb=1z13071Z1z11zrfZ1z11npe

  2. Such a beautiful post. Now if you could just provided the exact steps for stopping the dysmorphia!!! Love that you reach out to Carmen. xxxx

    1. Love Carmen and love you. I will work on some steps. 12?

  3. So true. I, too, remember being mortified by my parents and what they would do in public (Sit in the middle of the mall and sing Xmas carols). Now, I totally get that! I'm trying to encourage my daughter to be her own person and so far, she's doing pretty well. I know the teen years are coming, though, where you want to be completely unique and just like everyone else. I hope she remembers all the crazy things I have done (and will do) when she's older!

    1. I hope she remembers as well! I'm so glad you're encouraging her to be her own person and to embrace good nuttiness!

  4. I really needed to read that today. (As cliche a sentence as there can be, but true.) Thank you.

  5. I cannot imagine anyone ever wanting you to be even the tiniest bit different.

  6. I love this. We all experience loneliness and it's sometimes hard, perhaps especially if you don't have romantic love, to feel that there isn't love in your life at all. I love the perspective you have on life and love and friendship and always take what you have to say to heart because you speak from the heart and walk the walk. Hugs to you.


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