Here's my question. If you thought about it for a while, really considering your reactions to things, the way you view the world, your fears, your insecurities, your joys, your desires, what is your true, core age? If you had to state the "age" of your inner being, your inner-ness, how "old" in maturity is that core, that being, that essence?
My title suggests I think I'm five, but I truly believe that I am 12, going on thirteen, caught between prepubescence and adolescence, a no-woman's limbo of body and mind. Insecure about the changes, still clinging onto the old way of being a rough-and-tumble girl playing outside, wanting all the new things that come along with being a woman, scared of the future, enraptured by it.
So think about it. Find that person in you. How old are you? And how would you treat yourself at that age? How would you talk to yourself?
And so when I have a hard day or am upset or just overtaken by events, I think about myself at the age I am. I have in my mind's eyes this photo my mother took of me on the pool deck. We belonged to a local community club for years, and this photo catches me by the guard shack. I am sitting on a bench waiting for my workout, legs stretched out (newly shaved legs), worried, I know, that I look fat or wrong, but happy to have the sun shining on me, hoping that maybe, oh maybe, my breasts actually show a little under my Speedo--meaning, I might have some! I smile, wistfully, as if I know I can never go back and really don't want to. But I might want a trap door, a way back inside. I smile, looking at my mother, hoping for the best, which I can't know is certainly about twenty years away. The worst is actually about to happen. But the 12 year old doesn't know that. She holds the fragile egg of hope in front of her, her legs stretched out, her smile wan, growing, click.
There I am. I should be nice to her when I have hard days. I shouldn't beat her up over things so much. She can barely shave her legs (look at those nicks!)
Let's go swimming, I should say. Let's go now!
Causes Jessica Inclán Supports
Women for Women International Goodwill Industries Lindsey Wildlife Museum Freecycle.org