The eyes have it.
As in, the signs of aging. Or should that be the sighs of aging? *sigh*
Looking in the mirror, I wonder where my old face went. Rather, my young face. I see where my present face is going – South. Along with the rest of my parts.
Eventually, I expect them collectively to gather and party at the South Pole. No invitation needed. They seem to instinctively gravitate to that end of the world, and at the same time.
Sigh. I miss my collagen.
I remember sitting at a bar with a friend 16 years ago. Doug used to guess people’s ages at carnivals. He guessed mine to the year. Of course, there were far fewer years to guess from at that time.
Doug didn’t know me that well. Even at 30, most people guessed me to be much younger than I was. What was his trick?
The eyes. More specifically, the skin around the eyes. It told him everything he needed to know.
I don’t recall that there were all that many telltale signs embedded in my ocular tissues back then. Nonetheless, he saw enough to know.
He’d have a heyday now with all the signage, blinking away in neon green.
At a yearly exam a handful of years ago, my ophthalmologist dared mention the ‘b’ word. That’s right. Bifocals.
I stared at him – creases, wrinkles, line-age and all. “No.”
“Suit yourself. Your eyes aren’t too bad yet, but eventually you’ll need them.”
“And if I don’t get them? Am I damaging my eyes?”
Laughs. “No. Apparently, just your pride, if you do get them. When you get tired of inconveniencing yourself, let me know. We’ll get you set up.”
He couldn’t let the age thing go.
“A lot of my patients your age struggle, mentally, with going into bifocals. The progressive lenses these days make it fairly seamless. But then, for my patients who color their hair…”
He leans in closer for a good look…
“…hmmm, they struggle with bifocals more, too. You’ve got a nice crop of grey hairs coming in up top.”
He was relishing this conversation far too much. “Do you antagonize all your female patients, or am I special?”
Laughs, again. “I’m equal opportunity. And they keep coming back.”
“It’s definitely not because of your charm.”
About the same time, my hairdresser got in on the act. Did I have a sign hanging from one of my forehead furrows?
“Honey, you can try plucking out all your greys, like you said, but then there won’t be any hair left for me to cut.”
Rude, rude, I tell ya. What is it about the world reminding a woman that she’s turning 40, when she’s trying so hard to be content in her denial?
I’m a few years past that now, well settled into my progressives, and happily choosing the next shade of color. In honor of Fall, I think a rich auburn will do nicely.
It’ll compliment my crow’s feet beautifully.
Stickability Specialist Kris Harty helps healthcare teams persevere through Compassion Fatigue. Kris is Chief Inspiration Officer of Strong Spirit Unlimited. By sharing Stickabilities, or tools, she learned from her own medically challenging life requiring a Walking Stick, Kris encourages healthcare professionals to Stick to it – no matter what! Diagnosed at age seven with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, she draws on 40 years of insight, research and stories as a healthcare recipient. She is the patient who now returns to say “You make a difference. Thank you.” Her message is content-rich, practical, engaging and inspiring – and sporadically funny. Kris reduces burnout, turnover, and Compassion Fatigue by re-engaging healthcare professionals, particularly nurses. Kris Harty is an inspirational keynote speaker, author and small group facilitator who helps people overcome challenges by creating unstoppable momentum in life and work. Clients say her message is life changing. Call 877.711.STICK, e-mail StrongSpirit@StrongSpiritUnlimited.com, or visit www.StrongSpiritUnlimited.com.