New Mantra

By Diane DeVaughn Stokes

New Mantra

I have always had a sunny disposition. I get up in the morning ready to face the day and any challenges that lie ahead in a positive fashion. I know that irritates some people. A friend of mine who recently spent the weekend with my husband and I said that he has never seen anyone but me wake up with bluebirds singing on my shoulder! It takes him two hours before he wants to talk to anyone, even his lovely wife! So I learned pretty fast to hush the bluebirds ‘till he officially woke up.

Even when my husband and I first lived together there was an adjustment period of morning jitters. I was chirpy Susie Sunshine right away, and he was Oscar the Grouch ‘till he had his coffee, read the paper and had a shower. Then, and not one minute before, he recognized that I was in the room. So be it.

It takes a lot to get me in a bad mood. Even if something goes awry, I usually find the good in it and move on, but today was different. It was hard to shake off what happened today, and I’m ashamed to admit it. First I stopped by to see my mom who said it freaks her out sometimes to think she has a daughter as old as me! And that comes from the best role model I could ever have. Mom has faced age gracefully and with a passion to live each day to the fullest regardless!

Then I went shopping for eyeliner and the nice cosmetic rep said she put some extra goodies in my bag. The perfume samples were sweet, but the other items freaked me out. One was called “Fake-Out.” It was a wrinkle concealer. The other product was called “Miracle Worker” overnight crème. Yikes. Was I supposed to be thrilled with these goodies? It reminded me of when I was a kid and got an apple in my Halloween trick-or-treat bag rather than a Hershey’s chocolate bar; a little disappointing to say the least.

The horror of the day did not stop there. While at the checkout counter at the grocery store, the cash register spewed out a series of coupons for me. Yes, it knows I love them and use them. But today instead of cat litter discounts or toilet tissue coupons, I got one for Fixodent and one for Depends. I am not joking! I couldn’t make this stuff up if I wanted to. I even argued with the lady at the register that the machine must have me confused with someone else. She said the register is “all-knowing!” She said I must have bought such products in the past for someone else. Well, that was very tactful of her. But I hadn’t! I packed up my groceries and left for home feeling old!

That evening my husband offered to take me to a movie. I told him to make sure it was happy and sappy because I needed a lift. But the lift came before the movie ever began. When my husband bought the movie tickets the box-office guy asked to see my ID! He didn’t believe that I qualified for the senior ticket. Who lies about stuff like that?, I asked him. “You’d be surprised,” was his answer. Then, with a wink, he said “You don’t look a day over forty!” He did stutter a bit on the “f”– not sure he was going to say forty or fifty. But he said “forty.” Alleluia. Thank you, dear precious adorable hunky box-office guy! You just don’t know how much I needed to hear that today. If I wasn’t married….

So the point of all of this is: Yes I get up everyday on the sunny side of the street, and my future goal is to stay there all day long, unless something really serious happens. None of this was serious stuff.

I swear I’ll never let some young, funky, purple-haired cosmetic counter rep or stupid automated cash register get me down again. It was shallow of me to let it happen. Getting old isn’t so bad when I compare it to many of my friends who have not made it this far, and others who are facing horrible illnesses. My new mantra is, as long as I am healthy I will be BOLD about getting OLD.

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One Response to “New Mantra”

  1. Diane, a great story to which I can relate. Where do you get that Miracle Blur and Fake Out? :)

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