Tag Archives: aging

This is a Simple Story About Love

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All a mother wants, above and beyond anything else in life, is for her child to be happy. It’s a subliminal inclination fueled by emotion, like the echo of a throb…a primal instinct driven by that first, curious flutter in the womb.

And it never goes away.

My grandmother is no different from any other mother in this respect, even though her youngest was born with an umbilical cord wrapped around her neck. Unable to breathe, my Aunt Micki was rushed to a nurse instead of Grandmother’s open arms while doctors worked to change Micki’s color from a pallid shade of blue to something that looked a little more like life.

Micki survived only to suffer her first seizure when she was nine months old. It was the earliest of many signs that something about her seemed different. Abnormal. Uncommon. Not right.

As months turned into years, “different” transitioned to “retarded,” a term loaded with so much meaning that it overflowed, creating a non-navigable chasm between Micki and other kids her age. Words can be transformative in both good ways and bad, and “retarded” became a life-size label that would shade just about everything she did, starting with the length of the bus she boarded for school.

Both Grandmother and Micki learned to move under a cloak of filtered light that could only throw shadows on the stolen glances and downcast eyes of the world at large. Yet in those everyday moments where growth can’t really be measured, the bond between mother and daughter grew.

Given enough time, life will teach you that the only thing you can count on is change. Yet Micki’s role never has. She is and always will be my grandmother’s constant companion. Not her retarded companion, just a loving daughter and friend.

When my mom left home for college, Micki stayed. When my uncle took the same path seven years later, Micki stayed. When my grandfather died of a heart attack at the age of fifty-one, Micki stayed.

We don’t use the word “retarded” anymore, or at least, we don’t admit it when we do. From my grandmother’s perspective, that word has always misrepresented her youngest child. If you ask, she’ll say Micki came into the world just the way she was supposed to be.

Today, at almost ninety-three, the time-honored light in Grandmother’s eyes is fading. She’s more feeble now than even a few years ago, and bones that used to bend under the weight of life now break. Yet she pauses and lingers longer than most because her remaining purpose sits beside her, quietly holding her hand. Theirs is silent proof that under the right conditions, the narrative of a love story can last forever.

My grandmother will tell you that she’s here today because of youngest child. Not her abnormal, uncommon, retarded child, but her sweet, loving, beautiful daughter.

She’s not a surgeon, or a star, or even that girl from high school you wish you still knew. Yet if you ask Micki if she’s happy, she’ll nod her head and reply, “Yes. Yes I am.”

You don’t have to ask Grandmother the same question. The answer is obvious in the way she looks at her daughter, without bias or pity or doubt. To a mother, a child is simply a child and love is just love. Micki is her life’s greatest gift. We should all be so lucky.

On October 5, 2010, President Obama signed legislation requiring the federal government to replace the term “mental retardation” with “intellectual disability” in many areas of government. This measure, known as Rosa’s Law, strips the terms “mental retardation” and “mentally retarded” from federal health, education, and labor policy. According to the World Health Organization, about 15 percent of the world’s population — or 785 million people — has a significant physical or mental disability. 

For anyone accustomed to my attempts at more humorous, light-hearted posts, I’ll be back next week to talk about either what I found in my neighbor’s trash, or the time I spent in my version of prison, or both. These topics aren’t remotely related, but probably should be.

What Every Girl Needs to Know About Skin Care and Shaving The Fuzz Off Her Face

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There comes a time in every woman’s life when she realizes her husband is connected to a lot of well-endowed Facebook friends under the alias ‘Shazam Man!’ she’s not getting any younger, trades her engagement ring for a boob job breaks free from the constraints of social judgment, and installs a stripper pole in her bedroom starts to shave her face.

Or at least she should. Shave her face, that is. Stripping is pretty much all about daddy issues, flexibility, and cash flow.

Take me as an example. Not for the parts above I can’t discuss in public any of the stuff crossed out in the first paragraph, but for a hairy face.

That’s not me, but it could be (at least the beard part).

One day, I was lounging on the sofa in a killer pair of Jimmy Choos trying to figure out the horrendous stench coming from my son’s backpack, when my daughter made an interesting statement.

“Mommy, your face is furry,” she said.

“My face is not furry,” I replied as I attempted to pry open a lunch thermos while simultaneously resisting the urge to throw up in my mouth.

“Yes it is. You look all fuzzy and stuff.”

“You wanna see fuzz? Check out these meatballs,” I said.

“They’re not as hairy as you mom!”

“Well, you look like Mike Tyson,” I replied.

Image via blogspot.com

This, in fact, was true. She’d just had eight teeth pulled a couple of days before.

Grace's teeth look a lot less hairy than my face.

My daughter’s teeth aren’t hairy at all.

Since I’d pretty much laid down the best “In your face!” comeback ever on my 10 year-old, who gave me a serious “oh Mom, you’re such a loser” look had no idea who Mike Tyson was, I was feeling totally righteous. But I was also feeling a little premenstrual vulnerable, because out of the mouths of babes comes the truth, weird songs that can win you a bunch of money on YouTube or get you arrested, and stuff like that.

Anyway, as soon as I freed myself from the binding constraints of the ankle biters got my little darlings off to school, I checked the mirror. Closely. To my surprise, dismay, and genuine horror, I found that my daughter was 100% right. The entire side of my face looked alarmingly like the back-end of my dog.

You don't want your face to look like this.

You don’t want your face to look like this.

I immediately called 9-1-1 to report an emergency my friend, Lisa, the best paramedical esthetician in Denver, to let her know my hair of the dog philosophy to hangovers had morphed into something literal I had turned into a werewolf.

Image via sodahead.com

She just laughed the laugh of a confident, beardless woman and told me I needed to dermaplane.

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Who wouldn’t want Lisa to shave their face?

According to a random website with a super-cool design, dermaplaning is a highly effective procedure for removing the outermost layer of dead skin cells. Dermaplaning will also remove the layer of vellous hair that often covers the face, commonly known as “peach fuzz,” which traps dirt and oil. The treatment gives the skin a smoother appearance. The removal of the outer layer of skin cells also allows for better penetration and absorption of both pharmaceutical and cosmeceutical products. These skin cells are no longer a protectant, but are a barrier for other procedures and/or products.

Yep, that's me getting a scalpel shave.

Yep, that’s me getting a shave.

That sounds pretty much right on to me, so after informing my daughter that she can no longer take piano lessons finding some extra cash for my treatments, I feel just as qualified as the neighbor who constantly hits you up to buy girl scout cookies skin care products you’ll never use that promise you the ability to time travel, to offer my advice.

As a self-certified expert, I’d like to debunk several myths about skin care you may have read on the late-night chat room you haven’t told ‘Shazam-Man” about Facebook.

1. Some skin care remedies not only remove dead cells, buy can actually resurrect the dead.

This, in fact, isn’t true.

The woman on the left supposedly applied some freaky bovine hormone-enhanced cream a hydrating scrub to improve her skin’s appearance and achieve the look on the right. There’s just one problem. They aren’t the same person. I’m willing to bet my CSI home starter kit that the hand on the left is my great grandmother’s. I have the exact same bulging veins skin tone. My great grandmother made the best fried okra in the state of Georgia, mowed her lawn at the age of ninety-three, and dipped Bruton Scotch Snuff until the day she died. Which was in 1992.

Don’t believe the hype. As much as I miss my great grandmother, no amount of topical lotion will bring her back.

2. Anyone capable of giving you toenail fungus from a dirty set of clippers can successfully treat your skin.

This, also, is not true.

The process of dermaplaning involves the use of a surgical knife. It’s kind of like a custom-made shiv scalpel for fine lines, wrinkles, and whiskers.

te-animas-a-probar-el-dermaplaning-2

If your manicurist tells you she just purchased a cosmetology license from an infomercial dermaplanes, and pulls out a Bic Single Blade Lady disposable razor? Run. I made the mistake of cheating on Lisa with another recreational liar skin care specialist who ended up making my face look like this.

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That’s road rash on my face inflicted by a supposed expert (not Lisa) who dug so deeply during a dermaplane treatment that I thought she was trying to kill me reach my soul. I think she may have used a Lady Bic but I’m not sure because I couldn’t watch. The feeling of my own blood coursing down the side of my face in rhythm to Enya’s “Sail Away” was an experience I never want to repeat.

3. It’s a good idea to purchase skin care treatments with a Groupon.

Please refer to the previous two paragraphs.

4. Proper skin care will improve your sex life.

Maybe, but check out the items crossed out in paragraph one or the soft porn section on Netflix for a sure thing.

5. A well-planned and properly executed skin care regiment will reverse internal damage from heavy recreational drug use.

Image via trutv.com

These two women aren’t even remotely related. Just kidding. That’s Tawney Kitean after and before becoming addicted to prescription pills. Here’s a freebie piece of advice that has nothing to do with unwanted facial hair but will help you keep your teeth. Don’t do drugs.

So thanks to Lisa, I no longer have to endure “Chopsticks” being played over and over on a keyboard. I also have super-smooth skin.

If you’d like the best shave and skin care in the state of Colorado, visit Lisa at:

http://faceitandothernews.wordpress.com/about-lisa/

(303) 792-3838

If you’d like to install a stripper pole in your bedroom, check this site out:

http://www.yourtango.com/experts/sex-expert-chrystal-bougon/4-tips-choosing-right-stripper-pole-your-home

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Seven Ways To Get Me On My Back

Is A Boyfriend Who Could Be Your Son the Latest Status Symbol?

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If so, count me out. Ever since Madonna started taking NyQuilesque shots from the fountain of youth about a decade ago, I’ve been kind of obsessed interested in what it means to age gracefully. Not that I’m particularly graceful. Or aging. Because I’m not.

Just because I like to gear-up in mylar, completely spread- eagle, for hours a day to increase blood flow and stimulate new skin growth doesn’t mean I’m worried about getting old. It means I’m desperate. Image via greatwaywellness.com

I’m all for girl power, free drinks, equal pay, and getting your groove on to whatever poorly written porn you choose, but when it comes to throwing out the thongs and embracing Spanx, there’s one place I draw a line.

Image via muffintopmommy.com

It’s this:

“What? Of course I’m completely comfortable dating a boy who could be my son. Just because he likes to aggressively manipulate my shoulders in public, appears to be carrying rabies, and loves it when I slip a Rufie in his wine glass is none of your business. He’s still in high school. Back off.” Image via zimbio.com.

As I woman who’s logged a certain number of untold X marks on my back the calendar (there’s a reason I hide my birth year on Facebook), I’ve earned the right to express my thoughts on foreplay aging, and in my opinion, everything in this picture is wrong (except the Medieval-looking wine glass. Drinking anything out of a goblet while screaming “Show me the money!” is forever cool).

So in an effort to stem the tide of inappropriate behavior increasingly desperate female stars of a certain age who use every last shellacked nail to hang onto those swag bags filled with $1,000 disposable syringes of baby giraffe hormones, I’m offering some advice. Consider it a gift, words to live by, and my good deed for the day. Especially if you’re Demi Moore.

“What am I hiding behind my glasses? My wrinkles, silly! Ashton doesn’t realize he wasn’t even born when “About Last Night” hit the screen. Duh!” Image via freeimagesarchive.com

Reasons Not To Date A Guy You Could Have Given Birth To:

1. You’ll no longer be able to listen to your favorite 90s boy bands. Anything by NSYNC is an open invitation to a loud, petty, spit-filled midnight fight over ab definition.

OK, maybe NSYNC was the wrong visual. Image via people.com.

2. Mary Kay Letourneau. Not only did she go to jail because she was a teacher dating a thirteen year-old student (nothing wrong there), but now that she’s forty-eight? She has to deal with her own raging hormones and getting her husband through puberty at the same time.

“I just love it when your voice cracks and you slam the bedroom door repeatedly for no apparent reason!” Image via bumpshack.com

3. The inverse relationship between gravity and aging. As he’s struggling to get his up, everything you’ve got going on is sliding, well….down.

There are so many things wrong with this picture that I don’t know where to start. Plus I just threw up in my mouth. Image via saveyourselffromyourself.com

4. Jennifer Lopez

“Hola Mami! Does J Lo mean jello because I’m hungry and it’s time for my afternoon snack!” Image via thesuperficial.com

5. Dealing with errant facial hair. His and yours.

Image via apowl.com

5. While he’s texting naked pictures of you to his dorm mates, you’ll never figure out how to Pinterest his tweeter. Or pin his twitter-thingy. Or something like that.

6. Madonna

“Oh baby, is it bad lighting or is your face cracking off?” Image via cradlerobber.com

So that’s it. If these images aren’t enough to scare you out of dating someone who could have popped out of your womb, I can’t help you. Anyway, I’ve got my own issues to deal with, like getting to the plastic surgeon before the kids get home from school for BOGO breast implants. Can’t leave my ladies waiting!

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Seven Ways To Get Me On My Back: seven-ways-to-get-me-on-my-back

An Open Letter To Steve Wynn: Why the Forty Year Oldish Woman is Your Ideal Guest: an-open-letter-to-steve-wynn-why-the-forty-year-oldish-woman-is-your-ideal-guest