I woke up with a start at the sound of my alarm and realised with dismay that, thanks to my addiction to late-night binging on Netflix, I was late! I had to make an online presentation in exactly an hour and I was not ‘camera ready’! I jumped out of bed and started opening every cabinet possible in the room hunting for the cosmetic product which had become the most important part of my personal care regime. I could not see it anywhere. So I turned towards my husband and demanded, “where is it?”
“What?”He asked from behind his newspaper.
“My hair colour!” I said. The urgency in my voice was so strong that he was compelled to move his newspaper aside and look at me. “You had squeezed every drop from the tube last time,” he reminded me. “Oh no! I cannot make this presentation looking like this,” I whispered pointing at my grey side locks. “So what? Big deal”, he said nonchalantly covering his face with the newspaper again. After all ‘every’ clown’ has a silver lining’ he chuckled. But I had no time to fight with him for his snide remark. I had already wasted ten minutes so I hurriedly got ready for my meeting.
At 9 am sharp the zoom session started. I turned on the camera and made my presentation looking as I actually and truly am……..well into my 40’s. During the meeting, I looked at my image on the computer screen and realised that I had quite an impressive presence. Grey side locks, a few silver lines in my crowning glory, a not-so-defined jaw line, a double chin, faint creases on my forehead and around my mouth. There there, I did not look so bad. In fact, I realised proudly, I looked rather elegant and dignified, like someone who knew what she was talking about because she had the self-assurance and maturity that comes only with experience. I quite liked myself this way. I wondered why I had been worrying about my looks all the time and fretting over the fact that I could not visit my parlour to get my hair coloured and my face pampered so that I could look young.
Age is just a number, they say and probably they are right. But what does this number indicate? What does it convey? I now understood its deep significance. Each grey hair has a story to tell. Each wrinkle on the face has a rich history of experience, emotions and battles fought with the world. Each fine line, each fold on the forehead is like a memoir narrating its own memories. Every time a wife must have creased her forehead at the negligence of her husband or a mother must have worried about her children, a mark must have been left on her face. Each time you must have frowned and concentrated on solving a problem, a fold must have formed on your forehead, each time you were fire-fighting a situation( in the way in which only a woman can), one hair must have turned grey and each time you must have laughed aloud with genuine joy, the corners of your eyes must have crinkled beautifully.
So friends, relax and own these lines. Each one is your trophy, your badge of honour which you have won after you have burnished yourself in the struggle called “life”. Be proud and “with mirth and laughter let old wrinkles come!”
Views expressed above are the author’s own.
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