I have always been one of those people who got on her high horse about women who choose to undergo plastic surgery. The only problem is that my horse got so high I can no longer even mount it.
I can just hear the haunting replay of my old musings…
“Oh. My. Gosh. That woman has turned her lips into those of a duck-billed platypus.”
“Do it at your own risk, honey, knowing that someone may try to hire you as a puppet at Happy Hallow.”
“Is she trying to look like a Dr. Seuss character? Oh, how the doctor’s hook makes her look like a freak in a book.”
Ah, yes, the smugness of it all.
Wouldn’t you know that the darned horse of mine started his growth spurt when I was still in my 30s, when there was so much natural collagen, so little time to criticize those who had lost it.
I’ve had a few birthdays since my tirades began, but must confess that I delivered what will likely be remembered as my last, just three weeks ago, when a friend whispered her wishes of nipping and tucking the effects of Father Time.
If she truly was considering the procedure, I am sure that whatever sagged and bagged her was not buoyed by the donkey loads of scorn I stuffed into it.
But, fear not—I got my just desserts. And they tasted decidedly like crow with a hint of horse patty.
Just a few days later, you see, I stopped at Safeway to do some shopping and picked up a few pieces of poster board for my daughter’s school project. As the young and perky clerk started scanning my items, she chirped: “It looks like someone is doing a grandparent project.”
Did I say the clerk “chirped”? I meant “stabbed.”
It became one of those “Shining” moments (with the upper case “S” as a reference to the movie) when you have to mask the horror you feel within while someone stabs away at your psyche.
When I got to the car and asked my brain to act like crime stopper surveillance equipment and replay the footage, I tried my darndest to hear the clerk say ““It looks like someone is doing THE grandparent project.” You know, the project all the young families are doing to present to their grandparents on National Grandparents’ Day.
In the interest of full disclosure, I actually went home and Googled the date of Grandparents’ Day, praying as I typed that it was just days away, only to discover that there would be 320 days of opportunity to buy poster board for this lovely occasion intended to honor what I now have to embrace as “my people.”
The ordeal made me realize a couple of things:
1- You know you’re in a bad place when you are clinging desperately to the nuances of difference between a definite and an indefinite article, or “the” versus “a.”
2- You also discover that all the thought about such articles makes you not just old, but nerdy to boot.
3- When you handle these public, denial-shattering moments so poorly, plastic surgery is not just your destiny—it’s the making of an investment fund.
Lest you find me too melodramatic, let me remind you that a woman doesn’t change her standards on a dime. I prefer to think I’ve changed mine on a silver dollar after years of genuine questions and comments directed at my youth that have shaken me “like a Polaroid picture.” (Please note that a grandma wouldn’t make a reference to an Outkast song.)
The echoes of disses past come streaming in: “Wait, are you Shana or Shana’s mom?” “What beautiful girls—are they yours?” (Insert incredulous tone.) And the silent shrug and expression of “Meh” from a guy who checked me out, reacting the same way I did to my first bite of eggplant.
The only question now is what to do with all of this high horse I no longer have a use for. Do you happen to know if makes for a viable source of collagen?
Causes Shana Moore Supports