Wednesday, April 28, 2021

The Big Five-Oh: The Face I Deserve

I turned 50 today. 

It's very strange to consider. 

I mean, I don't feel fifty. 

Okay, well SOMETIMES I feel fifty, like when I squat to put away dishes and my hip doesn't want to let me get back up, or when I get winded climbing a big hill. I tell myself it's not the years, it's the mileage (and maybe a bit the baggage as well). It makes me feel more like Indiana Jones and less like Miss Marple. 

But mostly, I don't even feel like a real grownup yet…yet here we are. Fifty. 

Coco Chanel famously said that when we are fifty, we get the face we deserve. So, here's the face I deserve, picture taken first thing this morning when my hair was still shower-wet and I hadn't yet had any caffeine. 

So far as faces go, it's fine. Neither glamorous nor off-putting. Pleasant, and sometimes quite pretty, in the right light. 

The lines and creases don't bother me much, and any age spots just blend in with the freckles that were already there. I've started to get a little gray around the crown of my head which I confess I find a little startling when I notice, but otherwise, I still just look like me, a little rounder than I would maybe choose, given all the options, and way more like my Grandma Liz than I expected, given how much I always thought I looked more like my dad. 

So, do I deserve this face? 

When I look at this face, I see bright curiosity and a spark of adventure, a curve at the corner of the mouth that comes from laughing a lot and a squinty-ness about the eyes that comes from spending time smiling in the sun (and maybe from time behind a screen). The teeth are a little yellow from drinking lots of tea while reading and the jawline reveals a fondness for cookies. The woman in that picture looks like a lady who knows surprising things and has a kind heart. 

If I didn't know me, I think I'd be willing to talk to me, based on this face. 

It'll do. 


  1. Happiest of birthdays! And I'll continue to go with the motto that "it's just a number" :)

  2. Beautifully put -- your self-knowledge is keen and lovely.

  3. Congrats on your 50th birthday! You're still so young. Love the picture of you with your grandma.