When you’re opening a tiny paper window to eat a foil-wrapped chunk of chocolate each day, the days seem to go faster. By the ninth or tenth, all those open windows whisper ‘there’s not much time left to do all the things.‘ By the 20th, they scream ‘hurry, time is running out.‘ Today, I savor the chocolate, knowing there is only one window left, but I question this advent tradition along with the way we are living out these days- not waiting- but rushing and hemorrhaging resources. Like the Universe, we’re expanding, until one day we will simply disappear.
Month: December 2022
I started hating my body at nine when my belly was a white biscuit between two slick navy blue bikini parts. I hated my body when my Dad said we should jog together and started calling my sisters and I the Bertha Butt sisters. My breasts were too small to offset a ribcage that towered over hip bones when I lay deformed on the beach. Later, my pregnant belly swelled and then deflated into two doughy parts on either side of a vertical C-section scar. I gained fifty pounds and lost only the weight of a ten pound baby.
At fifty-nine, I almost love my body, I certainly don’t hate her any longer. My legs are strong and my knees can bounce on a trampoline. My arms, though melasma mapped, can squeeze my grandchildren. My dimpled thighs droop like my breasts, which point southeast and southwest these days. Preschool children love to squish my upper arms. My soft stomach is the bodyguard who tells me when to take a break from sweets and rest my body. My hair sparkles with natural highlights and I still smile with my eyes. If I could just learn to love my neck.
You pull me back from time to time. Tired and with a long to-do list, something compels me to return. The bread is gluten-free, which means I am not allergic to God here. I study random patterns in the gingerbread colored brickwork while meditating to advent hymns. My empty tank is filled when they light the peace candle. I buy beads to help the unhoused and accept a milkweed pod which may feed Monarchs on their way to Mexico next fall. A woman whispers, “I love your fairy hair” and I smile. We are all still young inside.