Thursday, August 13, 2009

Delusions of youth

I was just rereading an article in AARP Magazine this morning, and it finally registered with me that the completely-gray-haired woman in the accompanying photo was the same age as I am-- 60.

Here's a photo (previously linked to this post) of my late mother, taken in August 2005 , when she was 81 years old. As you can see, she still hadn't gone completely gray, even at that late age. I know for a fact that my mother did not use hair dye, and even stopped wearing make-up, after she had an allergic reaction and her doctor forbade both. I joke with people that I may be the only person on earth who actually believes that the late former President Ronald Reagan may not have been lying when he said that he didn't dye his hair.

I may not have inherited any of my mother's aptitudes (though I've inherited her face-your-problems-and-deal-with-them attitude)--I can barely boil water, I have no sense of direction, and I can't add 2 + 2 without a calculator, while my mother was an excellent cook, a skilled front-seat navigator in the car, and a retired bookkeeper--but I've definitely inherited her hair. Maybe one of the reasons why I don't see myself as old is that, with no more than about half a dozen gray hairs, I don't look my age.

Here are my husband and me at last week's NHC Institute. The resemblance between me and my mother, aleha ha-shalom (rest in peace), is hard to miss. Aptitudes, or lack thereof, notwithstanding, I am my mother's daughter.


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