When I look directly into the mirror lately, I am startled by the person staring back at me. She looks familiar but nothing like the me I remember. She’s wrinkled, lined and sagging. When the heck did that happen?
I watch newscasters and celebrities much older, or at least a little older than myself, suddenly appear after a month or so hiatus looking fabulous if not a bit tight around the lips and eyes, and I say, “Good facelift.” My husband doesn’t notice them, but after I had repeated that line dozens of times he finally asked me, “Do you want a facelift too?”
Hmm – I had to think at least a few minutes about it. “Too expensive, too risky, too painful. No.” If I never really cared about looks before, why would I start to care now? I tossed the suit jackets and the makeup the day after retirement.
After all, every wrinkle, every line has been an adventure.
Wrinkles = lifetime adventures
I can count several lines appearing after hiking part of Angel’s Landing in Zion National Park, and several more while clinging to the canyon wall on Bright Angel Trail at the Grand Canyon.
Startling a rattlesnake at our campsite, gasping in the passenger seat while my husband drives the motorhome on the edge of a mountain, the too-close buffalo that turned to look at us eye-to-eye at Theodore Roosevelt National Park, all could share responsibility.
Who knows what damage the Arizona sun causes, even with sunscreen, as I sit contentedly watching yet another amazing pink and orange-streaked sunset across the desert.
Walking the trails to the ruins of native peoples from thousands of years ago, climbing a mountain to see petroglyphs, traversing the lava fields of past volcanos, being able to see an entire giant mammoth skeleton, camping by still waters with no one else around, camping by the ocean, actually living in an RV and getting to camp every day… it has all been a worthwhile adventure.
Every wrinkle and every line is an adventure. The adventure of a lifetime.