Friday, May 09, 2008

The First

So I find this gray hair on my head two days ago.
It totally shocked me.
My mouth was open and I was leaning in towards the mirror, trying to see if it could POSSIBLY be real. I had this weird thought pass through my brain (quickly), that maybe it was somebody else's that had sort of wafted through the air and landed on my head.
And stuck there.
Yeah, it didn't make sense, but there was that moment of confusion.

The thing is, I don't think anybody really believes that they're going to get old. I mean deep down, do you really think it's going to happen? It's like none of us think we're going to die. I mean, how bizarre is that - to die, and not even be here anymore? Nobody believes it. Intellectually, of course. But in the front of your brain?

At some point it's thrust upon you, and then you have no choice to believe it. But wouldn't we all freak out and run around in circles frightening the neighbors if we really really really believed it?

I saw an old friend of mine today. I think of him as a friend, although he was really my spiritual director and so the whole thing was kind of one-sided. I loved going to talk with him because he was the only person I ever knew who only wanted to hear about me. Being a self-centered person, I really liked that. Anyway, he sort of helped me to be honest with myself once upon a time, and so after all that deepness it's always been kind of awkward to have small talk when we occasionally meet. It seems better to say only honest things.

So I saw him and gave him a big hug and I looked at him and he looked all cool and he had more gray and he was older, and he had this great smile on his face. He just looked good and I told him so. Then I added, "You are aging well," and he smiled and nodded because he knew exactly what I was saying even though it came out sort of blunt and weird.

I walked away having a mental conversation with myself as is often the case after I open my mouth in public, and I'm just rolling my eyes at myself thinking, "You're AGING well?" Just what every 40-something man likes to hear. But honestly, as with most everything else, it was a statement having to do with me. I looked at him and he was happy and peaceful and cool. He's right in the same boat with me, but he's doing okay with it. No running in circles. No frightening the neighbors.

That's what I want.


First UMC said...

There's this Bonnie Raitt song that I LOVE "Nick of Time". The kids like it because the first line is "hey shut up" and we all sing it really loud because its not forboden if its in a song.

Anyway, the middle of the song is:

I see my folks are getting on
And I watch their bodies change
I know they see the same in me
And it makes us both feel strange

No matter how you tell yourself
It's what we all go through
Those lines are pretty hard to take
When they're staring back at you

Ain't that just the truth???

Oh and I canNOT believe you are just now getting your first gray. I love you babe, but you will not get any sympathy from me.

Michelle said...

I understand "you're aging well" and to someone you respect. It seems it's a hopeful thing to see.

I started getting white about two years ago. I used to pull them out and once, at work (sigh) I grabbed the wrong white hair and grabbed a chunk of the "normal hair" just as a woman was walking in to the bathroom.

It looked like i was attacking myself. Hair everywhere. I tried to joke it off, but she just kept staring.

Who knew? Aging!????!!! Seriously?

Kulio said...

Love those words UMC! Those are awesome.
Michelle I'm laughing about the lady in the bathroom...what a great story :-)

cjs said...

lol. (telling the man he was aging well)

who cares about a gray hair if


Lisa Yik the Chick said...

You, my dear, slender, beautiful, healthy, spiritually aware cousin, are aging very well. And I yank them out or die them religiously!!! :)