Sunday, December 4, 2011

The REAL-STEEL Magnolias

On Tuesday I turn 49!! Which, if you would have asked me 10 years ago, I would have thought would make me mucho depresso… but quite to my surprise, I’m not depressed at all. I think I’ve finally embraced my age and all the WISDOM, WRINKLES (well maybe those not so much), and the WEALTH that comes with it.

WISDOM: Some of my favorite memories as a little girl are when my momma spent time with her girlfriends. She had many, Ms. Ann, Ms. Pat, Ms. Vonnie, to name a few… She surrounded herself with strong southern women, much like herself. One of my FAVORITE TIMES was when she would have 1 or 2 of them over in the evening when my daddy was working the dog-shift. They would sit around the kitchen, smoking cigarettes, playing cards, sometimes with rollers in their hair, and talking (whispers, laughter, secrets). It was a true gathering of Steel Magnolias that help mold me into the woman I am today. My sisters & I used to LOVE sneaking into where these forces of nature would gather (usually after we had been tucked into bed & FORBIDDEN to get up). We would sit quietly on the floor (so as to not be noticed) in our pj’s, listening and watching as our beautiful momma and her friends laugh & have adult girl talk. I remember hearing my momma say, more than once during one of these sessions, “If I knew THEN what I know NOW….”…and I never really got it until I hit 35 or so. (You know, the time in your life when you maybe FINALLY realize WHAT you want to be when you grow up, but then you look at your age and decide you are just not willing to sacrifice what it would take to get there anymore. ) Anyone who says they have NO REGRETS is either not being honest, or they are just too arrogant to admit it. I’ll readily admit I have many, many regrets in my life. That being said, I LOVE my life and where it is. That doesn’t mean I don’t wish I would have done some things differently or taken different paths at some points in my past. It simply means I SURVIVED my own stupidity and lived to enjoy the things I did RIGHT! I’m so thankful for all the blessings God has given me despite myself!

WRINKLES… Of course, I don’t want to get old & wrinkly. I think the key to this is mostly genetics. That’s just my observation from being around for almost half a century. Maybe there is a little hope… I think my momma looks pretty darn good for her age of 72. Although I loved every single line & crease etched into my MeMaw Flossye’s face before she passed. Each line represented laughter, worries, or prayers over her family. That being said, I’m no masochist!~ I’m very grateful to live in a time when there is something we can do to help our looks stay “fresh”; however, I’m not a fan of the “plastic ladies” but I’ not against doing little things to help stave off Father Time. After all, as Dolly says: “Gravity Works”.

WEALTH… I’m not talking about money. I’m talking about RICHES. It’s that gentle hug by a friend when they know you’re down, or a smile & wink from your mate when no one else is looking. The unexpected visit or phone call from a grown child when you are really missing them or that magical kiss from a grandbaby with the power to wash away ALL your troubles. These are the riches for which I am most grateful. My family brought me to dinner for my birthday last night at one of my favorite places (My Mommas in New Roads, LA). It was rainy & cold outside, but inside the quaint little restaurant was awash with tiny white lights & the smell of homemade bread. As I bathed in the love and laughter at our table, surrounded by the people on this earth that I hold most dear, I tried to soak it all up and MY CUP RUNNETH OVER.

Take good care,

Steel magnolias

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