Laugh Lines of Graceful Distinction

Posted by on Apr 2, 2014 in Blog | Comments Off on Laugh Lines of Graceful Distinction

Laugh Lines of Graceful Distinction

I don’t mean to discount anyone who is wrestling with the aging process or anyone who is really truly vested in never looking like they have been on the planet as long as they truly have…but I had an experience yesterday that continues to play in my mind and now I will write it here so it can leave me alone.

I have crows feet on my face.  On each outside corner of my eyes are lines.  They are deep.  They don’t go away when my face is relaxed.  They get very deep when I am talking, or laughing.  I laugh a lot.  My lines are permanent.  I can’t see them unless I am in front of a mirror or looking at a photo, but I know they are there and they don’t bother me.  I have spent many years smiling and I hope to have many more.

Yesterday, while making my way through one of the most prominent (aka expensive) shopping centers in my metropolis, I was stopped by a man handing out a sample of something.  It looked like jewelry cleaner (it had a diamond on it).  It has been a while since I have cleaned my wedding band, so I stopped (rarely do I do this when I am firmly aware that I am about to be sold to).  Turns out it wasn’t jewelry cleaner, it was skin care.  I say “care” loosely here as it was really cosmetics designed to alter the appearance of your skin whether or not it is actually “good” for your skin to use them.

Not being a rude sort of person, and realizing it was ME that stopped and gave the green light, I patiently spent 30 seconds (no laughing!) to listen.  Before I knew it, there was a magnifying mirror up to my face and a cotton swab of goo being dabbed next my eye.

“How does that feel?” was the question being posed.  “sticky” was my answer.  Not what he was looking for, I’m sure.

The mirror returned.  “do you see how those lines are already going AWAY?”  Um…I guess so.  “just wait another few seconds and you will see.”

I felt a sudden fear of loss that didn’t seem quite reasonable and sort of surprised me. “Hey.  I am on my way to a meeting, am I going to look like Bell’s palsy victim with one eye drooping and one crazily open?” I asked.  Humor is my favorite defense mechanism.


Then the slight fear turned into something closer to annoyance and I finally said it.  “Why do you think I need to lose my laugh lines?  I got those from years of being happy.  Why would I want to give them up?”

“Of course” he says.  “You EARNED those.  But don’t you want to age GRACEFULLY?”

That was it.  I’m done.  Apparently I do NOT want to age gracefully if that means putting up with being sticky and gooey (and broke – that stuff was expensive!) and having some young man without my life experience give me advice on growing or losing anything – even my laugh lines, crows feet, or whatever you want to call them.  I left that twisted, self-judging, version of graceful with him as I laughed and said “Nope!  I guess not!” while I turned and walked away.

Yes, I am sure he disagreed with my philosophy. I am also pretty sure that he chalked his encounter with me up to just one more crazy aging woman who doesn’t get how important looking oddly young for your age is.  I am sure there was someone else to take my place just moments later and who may have actually forked over the $400 to age “gracefully” with gooey, puff-less, line-less eyes.

Not me. I am old enough to know better and thankful to have so many smiles that they stayed.