March 21, 2016
I wasn’t always as boring as you perceive me. I notice your rolled eyes and patronization. I suppose to you I am a doddering fool whose grasp of these modern times is tentative at best. Indeed, some people found me interesting once.
You see, as a young person, I volunteered at several riding stables, exchanging my labor for horsemanship lessons. However, a growth spurt dashed my aspirations of becoming a jockey. (Five foot seven is far too tall for a jockey.)
I loved theatre. Makeup and costumes allowed me to be close to the stage until I built up my courage and assumed roles. I sang in musicals and performed in school productions. I was paid for my talents in a few productions, but in college, a professor put my aspirations into a different perspective. “Drop your clothes” met with my indignation. I marched off the stage outraged and took no other parts. However, my passion for live productions remains untarnished.
In a certain black belt academy, a trophy I won gathers dust. My self-defensive skills saved my life twice when I fought off would-be attackers. See, Mom’s a bit tougher than you realized.
Speaking of tough, I’ve weathered several floods, keeping our family afloat and trying to keep your lives as unaffected by the circumstances as possible. I lost several babies and battled with cancer.
Since the age of twelve, I’ve worked in some serious capacity. A man of questionable reputation offered me a job as a wrestler, which I declined. I also opted out of a beauty pageant and modeling jobs. I’ve read my poetry aloud at several events, and the A.P. thrilled me by picking up some of the stories I wrote for the local Gannet publications.
I may not be the world traveler I wish to be, but I sate my wanderlust as best I can. My bucket list will never be completed, because a new fancy occurs to me every day. Though I’ve not hopped the globe yet, I read all I can anticipating the experiences.
I believe every day should be celebrated and its beauty perceived. I see in every person a potential friend and kindred spirit. I love trying new things and learning something every day. Although you seem to think of these as childish and foolish traits, I embrace them knowing they define me. I am an old soul with a youthful enthusiasm, and I’ve not given up on my dreams. Not really. If I’m too tall to ride in the Kentucky Derby, I’ll toast the winners with a mint julep.
Some days, I’m irrepressible. I dance in starlight and search for rainbows. Others, I feel too tired to dress and face the day, yet I do rise. I do dress. I do face even the roughest days and its challenges. I make mistakes and hold tight to what matters. My love for you and our family. My responsibilities to God and this world. And my adherence to an undying belief in dreams.
Some might even find your mother’s tenacity interesting. Who knows? Someday, maybe you will, too.
I hope when you are older and staring at Fate’s hourglass with its sands spiraling to the bottom, you’ll hold true to your beliefs and dreams. I hope you’ll realize your potential and understand although life doesn’t always work the way we expect, we can adjust our courses to encompass our greatest self-actualization, even as older people.
I’ll conclude with a favorite quote from George Eliot. “It is never too late to be what you might have been.”
I love you dearly and always will,
Your marginally interesting
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