I Own This Face, Wrinkles and All

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This is my face. For a long time I've wanted to disown my face. Years of smoking, laying around in the sun with no sunscreen, using cheap face creams, and basically not caring gave me drapes of wrinkles, some so deep they look intentional. Like how could someone have such significant lines on her face?

Janice Wilberg
Image: Janice Wilberg

Well, my mother did. She sunned and smoked herself so much and so hard that her fair, smooth skin wizened into the face of a Kentucky dried apple doll. Loving her, I followed her path.

All right. It was unwittingly.

So for the past ten years or so, I've really been disowning my face. Pretending the crevices weren't there. Making sure my hair swept across most of my forehead to take care of that rocky landscape. Just stuck in an echo of 'say it ain't so.'

But it was and it is. So I've set about owning my face. First I had my hair cut impossibly short. This forced me to not only own my whole face but also give up the unsuccessful attempt to hide my two hearing aids. Oh yes, I'm not only wrinkled, I am also increasingly deaf. I want to embrace this.

So like some stereotypical old lady wanting to look young, I got my hair chopped off and spiked, had another hole pierced in both ears, bought a pair of skinny jeans and two pairs of boots and practiced saying, "I might be somebody's grandmother but I can still kick ass."

Because being hot is the hardest thing of all to give up. For years, I gave up that territory to everyone younger than me. No more.  Too much went into building this little masterpiece.  Too many worries, late night phone calls, incredible surprises, kids that elated and disappointed, close calls, and hard work to disown or hide or apologize.

I claim what's mine. I own it. I own this face.

 

 

 

 

Jan Wilberg

www.redswrap.wordpress.com

 

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