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Turn Turn Turn

This Season

I don't feel like recounting where I've been, but I can give an account of where I am.

Growing up I was taught that a lady doesn't share her age, but let me break with convention and tell you that I turn 47 years young this summer.  I am currently coming to grips with what it means to be 'middle age'.  When I was little I used to ask my Mum, 'Am I beautiful? Am I pretty?'  For some reason it was so important to me that I be so.  And my mother would never give a straight answer.  She would say, something along the lines of  'Looks don't matter. Intelligence matters.  Education matters.  It's what on the inside that counts'.  Eventually I gave up with the questions and the striving to be physically beautiful and started to rely on my insides.  In the process I developed a pretty interesting personality if I do say so myself.  However, somewhere along the way, I realized that I was also attractive.  Not beautiful, but attractive.  Enough so to turn heads when I walked into a room.  A few years ago I became conscious of the fact that heads had stopped turning.  I am predominantly OK with this.  I don't need the turning heads. But it has made me think about age, my age, and how I am perceived by the public versus how I perceive myself.  I am now referred to as 'ma'am'.  But when they say ma'am I don't know who they're talking to.  Because surely I am about 20 years old.  A somewhat irresponsible weirdo that giggles at inappropriate moments and blushes over things that don't require a flushed face.

I am married.  I have been married for about 4 1/2 years.  My husband is actually someone I went to high-school with in Italy 30 years ago.  We lived in the same 'Parco' which is basically a fancy Italian word for neighborhood.  We were neighbors and friends (just friends).  About six years ago we were reunited in Virginia via a mutual schoolmate.  And the rest as they say is history and apparently herstory as well.

I have a child, a son.  I never thought I'd be a mother.  Really.  I never imagined it. If I closed my eyes and looked at my future life, children were not there. Maybe cats, but not children.  At points in my life I wanted children, sometimes so much it would bring me to tears, big wet sloppy snotty tears, but I never thought I would be given that gift.  I assumed I was one of those people that was destined to be a mother in the metaphorical sense only.  My son, our son, is 3 1/2 years old.  He was a surprise in the most shocking and intense way.  My shock at being pregnant was akin to that of Arnold Schwarzenegger in the movie Junior.

For the past year almost I have lived in Germany with the aforementioned husband and son.  We live in a small village.  Wikipedia says we have a population of about 1,400 people but it doesn't even seem like that many.  Our town has one restaurant, a post office, pharmacy, convenience store, thrift store, two churches, a few soccer fields, many horses and not much else.  We live in the middle of the Palatinate Forest.  Think Grimm's Fairy Tales.

And that is where I am.  Who knows where I'm going.


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