I have waited my whole life for the end of vanity.
I believed there would be a peace to find. A solitude.
I saw my grandparents, beyond their prime.
I have equated their joy and the love we all had for them with life's winter years.
I have believed there would come a time when lust would leave our hearts and greater things would replace it.
I have looked forward to that time.
And then it came.
It came too soon.
It came too suddenly.
Only yesterday I looked in the mirror at a face pretty enough to turn the head of a twenty-five year old boy.
And, although I would not have acted on that attention, I'll admit it was quite flattering.
Ahh...I was twenty-six a breath ago.
I was thirty-seven yesterday.
...I am broken now.
I walk forward wondering if I will ever turn another head in anything other than morbid curiosity.
I move through the days, head held high and I have not changed. I am me...
...but I hear my own voice screaming those words..."I am me!"...and I fear no one hears.
Vanity is for the young.
I am a hideous person to belive that I am less without that face.
I have been blessed these thirty-seven years.
I have humor and talent and intelligence.
I have unconditional love. (or do I?)
I am lucky.
And yet, that thought creeps through my mind every time I meet someone new...and every time someone I've known forever flinches at my crooked smile.
They say, "You'd hardly notice." and then they mimick this disfigurement without knowing they're even doing it.
Oh, how it cuts through me.
I never knew I was this vain.
I longed for the days.
I longed to be The Woman in Purple.
I longed for the time when I could be fat and wear no makeup and not worry about washing my hair every day.
I longed for a time when people would accept me "as is".
I thought that came with age and I fell in love with the grey hairs I refuse to hide.
Those greys mean that I am moving closer to that time.
That time of peace.
The days without vanity.
But they came too soon.
And they came too suddenly.