Portrait by Karen Walrond
The portrait above was taken by the lovely Karen Walrond of Chookooloonks fame. I was thrilled and honored to participate in The Motherhood Project that she has created in conjunction with Proctor & Gamble. She asked me a lot of interesting questions – and a lot of really hard ones. My answers are over on her site today and I’d love it if you took a peek for her.
Karen and I visited for a bit about her project and upcoming book and all the while she was snapping away with her camera. She was kind enough to send me the three pictures that she liked the best and her email closed with, “I hope you enjoy them.”
My response, after thanking her for the experience and the pictures, was, “The pictures are startling.”
Because they were.
It’s not often that my face fills an entire frame. It’s not often that I clearly see my mother’s eyes and smile, my grandmother’s nose and every last detail that currently resides on my face. There are these things – these tenants – that were just so…so… so PRESENT in those pictures. And, well, I’m pretty sure I hadn’t invited them.
But then I realized (all too many days later) that in a sense I had invited them.
The crease above my lip when I smile has gotten a little deeper – because I’ve had so very many moments of laughter along the way. Because I choose laughter when I can. Because I love laughter more than anything.
My forehead now has lines – because as a parent and step-parent there are endless moments of concern and worry and fear and doubt. But also because there are also endless moments of tremendous, wonderous surprise. Those raised eyebrows – they are harsh on the complexion, you guys. But those are because of my choices, so I’m okay with them.
My dimples when I smile are now joined with those oh-so-telling laugh lines. Another side effect of a choosing a life of laughing before crying.
My freckles are rampant – thanks to a life in the south and a love of the sun.
I asked for all of these things by choosing the life I have now. This is my 40 year-old face.
I wonder where it will take me next?