I go around feeling like this:
Of course I don’t think I look like that! I know I don’t. Not anywhere close. Not in the same ballpark, neighborhood of even hemisphere of it, it’s just that If I had to visualize how I feel, this is how I visualize me. Then, I will unfortunately, see a photo of myself someone’s recently taken, and immediately I feel like I look like this:
The stomach! The wattle! The dried-out hair…it’s hard to take it all in. I exercise, I only eat 27% of what I WANT to eat in a day; I take tons of vitamins; I try to get enough sleep, but there it is. I am old and dumpy. Far from what I looked like in high school, and of course, intellectually, I know I don't look like I looked in high school, but I still feel the same spirit-wise.
Then, time goes by and I forget about the photo (can you spell “post traumatic stress disorder?) and happily go about life. Recently, I was happily going about life while some contractors were over to tend to the effects left by having a new door installed (of course, installing the door uncovered tons of rotten wood around the door frame which lot$ had to be done to correct. (Can you spell home ownership: the pantload that keeps on giving?) Anyhoo… I’m making out the check for the head contractor dude, when he asks, “You know who you look like?” While I know the answer will NOT be Cameron Diaz or anyone close to it, you naturally think, when someone makes a point of saying, “You know who you look like?” it’s going to be really flattering. That they're going to name someone a little younger, someone you could only hope to look like if they are saying it to your face and especially IF YOU ARE WRITING OUT A CHECK TO THEM AT THAT PRECISE MOMENT. I asked, with trepidation, “Who’s that?” Wait for it… Wait for it….
“Really?” I asked, trying to sound pleased and not totally deflated.
“Yes! You look just like her! Do you know who she is?”
“Yes,” I reply trying to continue writing vs. visually tasering contractor dude. “I love her.” Which I do. I really, really do. It’s just that I wanted him to say someone younger than me, not someone a year older. You never want to hear you look like someone older or even close to your age. (Naturally, I immediately looked up Bonnie’s age right after the contractor left to see how old I was looking to the unbiased, outspoken local contractor population.)
While looking up Bonnie’s age, I found lots of photos of her. Looking at them, I realized I would be happy and lucky to look like Bonnie Hunt or remind anyone of her. She is a wonderfully warm, happy, funny, kind and beautiful woman – at least that’s what I think of when I think of her, and if that’s at all how I present myself to the world, then I am very lucky indeed. Stomach, wattle and all. (I'm talking about my wattle and stomach - not Bonnie's - she doesn't seem to have those things, and if she does, mine certainly trump hers!)