In 3 years, I will be as old as my grandmother was when I was born. My grandmother, ZZ, has been dead for 21 years – this is beginning to sound like a word problem in some horrible math book. Don’t worry, there are no trains leaving the station in this post. Moving on (yes, I did really just do that)
Anyhow, for the first half of my life, she was my most-favorite person in the world; we had a very strong relationship and I thank her daily for all she gave me. I haven’t seen her in a long time. Obviously. I mean, it’s not like she’s a zombie, though ZZ would be an awesome name for a zombie.
Anyway, I haven’t seen her in 20+ years…until today.
I’m 40. Life and time have taken their toll on my person and it’s showing. I look more and more like my own mother every day and today, when I looked in the mirror while washing my hands, I also saw my grandmother.
It’s the jowls.
I’m sure she didn’t have them when she was 43 but by the time I started memorizing her face, her voice, her smell, all those things you learn about a person just by being around her, her jowls were probably making an appearance and the older she got, the more pronounced they became. For some reason, one I can’t figure out, I loved them. They looked so soft and touchable and they were so … ZZ. No one else had a jawline quite like hers. And now I do. Or, at least, I’m beginning to.
I know I should be a little alarmed by my sagging skin, my gray hair and wrinkles, my changing appearance. And sometimes I am. But today I’m thankful and even joyous to find my grandmother’s face in mine; it’s nice to see her again.