I remember many long ago conversations with my dear Aunt Agnes (I've written several times about her on this blog, and if you click on her name it will link to one of the stories.) She would often laugh at how old she "suddenly" found herself (she was 50 years older than me,) and yet how inside she felt just like the young girl she once had been. On her apartment wall hung a black and white photograph of a pretty young girl in a long skirt and starched white blouse, hair tied back in a large black bow. The twinkle in her eye had not changed a bit in the many decades since the photograph was taken.
Now that I'm in my sixties I so relate. There are parts of my body that just aren't what they used to be, but my heart and spirit don't feel old.
One day last fall I was driving somewhere when I noticed my hands on the steering wheel. I work my poor hands hard and they are usually sorely neglected in the manicure department, but it was the brown "age spots" that caught my attention.
Right then and there I decided. I'm not going to call them 'age spots," I hate the sound of it. Nope--I had a flash of inspiration! I decided to reframe my view of the spots; they would each represent a hard won life lesson learned--a kind of badge of honour instead of something to feel ashamed of.
Later I was telling some friends about my "epiphany" and said that I was trying to think of a good name for the spots that related to this idea. "Bullet points!" said one friend--a clever idea, I thought.
But I think I'm going to call them "Exclamation Marks" because I am rather addicted to their overuse, and it kind of fits, because when you learn a life lesson, you feel like exclaiming something like, "Eureka!"
What are my life lessons? Well, that's a whole other blog post, which would require some thinking time---I promise I will write about them soon. But meanwhile, I'd love to read yours, in the comment section.