Monday, May 31, 2010
I am constantly on the look out for that miracle lotion or potion; that cream or mask that will get rid of the lines and crevices that plague my face and body. I have tried hundreds; ones with plant extracts; ones with animal extracts; ones with unpronounceable extracts; ones you apply at night; ones you apply in the morning; ones in tubes; ones in pots; ones in fancy capsules (never sure if I am meant to swallow them, spread them or stick them up my bum?) and ones that come with their own special spatula. All in vain, the lines stay firmly etched in place. My behaviour must be normal, otherwise why would there be such a huge array of these, unfortunately, useless products? All the models that promote these creams in the glossy magazines, look stunning-but I reckon I could too if I was 25 years younger and had my own personal make up artist.
But the other day, something someone said stopped me in my tracks; made me see my lines in a whole new light. There I was whining on, yet again, about my wrinkles and she said “Behind every line there’s a story”
That night I did something I never ever do-I got out of the shower and instead of skidding, swiftly past that spawn of Satan-the mirror- I stopped and had a good look at myself; I even put on the over mirror light to have a better inspection . I usually avoid mirrors and bright light like the plague, but this time I took a good look at all the lines, wrinkles, stretch marks and scars and realized that my body is like a book; my autobiography. Where to start; because despite all those creams, there is still so much choice!
Chapter One. Childhood Scars- cautionary tales. The one on my hand from playing with a penknife I shouldn’t have played with. The chickenpox scar on my neck, where my brother, not satisfied with his own crusts, sneakily picked one of mine off whilst I slept. The half moon shaped one next to my eye; the result of my one and only attempt at fly fishing with my Dad. That one on my forehead from when my brother got over excited playing chase and smashed a vase on my head! Finally from knees, down- all those bumps and scrapes and dents: a wonderful childhood filled with; climbing trees; slipping on rocks at the beach; jumping on, and falling off, beds and general, day dreaming clumsiness.
Chapter Two. Laughter lines-fairy tales. Fun with friends; riding a bike without stabilizers; squinting at the sun whilst sun bathing; first loves; Christmas; Birthdays; roller coasters; seeing the blue line on the pregnancy test stick, getting my first job and so many more. All these wonderful events recorded in the jigsaw puzzle round my eyes.
Chapter Three. Frown lines-tales from the dark side. The small line on the bridge of my nose that appears when I am puzzled or do not understand something (this line appears a lot!) The feint lines on my forehead born from worry- exams, fights with friends, fights with family, a difficult pregnancy and the numerous other obstacles that have been put in my path to try me. The deep furrow in the middle of my brow- an ever present reminder of a marriage that went wrong.
Chapter Four. Baggy eyes and dark circles-bedtime tales. I have eyes like a panda most of the time; a combination of babies stealing all my sleep hours and sleep disturbed by guilt and emotions through separation and divorce. Not much improvement, despite gels and fridge, cold creams, but this is because now life is FUN- the dating game is on again.
Chapter Five. Stretch marks-happy ending tale. How I fought to keep these at bay-cocoa butter, mashed avocado (what a waste of my favourite food!), baby oil, nut oil, cooking oil! How silly- after all the problems I had to conceive and I try to erase the permanent reminder that I have two amazing daughters!
Cracks and crevices; lines and wrinkles. Signs of a woman in decline? No.