I am sure that all of my grandparents were always old. I never saw them any other way. And my parents - I know that they were not always as old as they are now, but they have always been adults, receding hairline, some crow's feet. So it's strange to watch this face-which-the-mirror-tells-me-I'm-wearing as it starts to look more and more like my dear grandmother's face. Wasn't I the one that was meant to be forever youthful?
Although she's been gone for forty years, in my mind, I can clearly see my grandmother's soft, loose skin, the drab, gray hair, braided around her head, and the purple and green veins gnarling on the back of her hands. Now, I am morphing into her. And there are few other women who I would be as honored to embody.
This skin appears to be hanging on my cheek and brow bones, not tightly covering them like it used to. And in order to not look as though I'm grouchy or unhappy, in order to compensate for the mouth's new downward look, I realize that I need to constantly smile. What a beautiful task to be charged with - to find so much reason to smile that this face knows no other way of being!
I wonder if my grandmother always felt as young inside as I do now. I wonder if, when thinking of her father's mother, her heart loved so much that it hurt. And if she, too, realized that the-face-which-the-mirror-told-her-she-was-wearing was a precious gift from her beloved grandmother.