What does your now look like?

Tessa and cat in car


I was complaining to my 83 year old grandmother on the afternoon of my cousin’s wedding.  Complaining to my grandmother is never a smart idea.  She raised 7 kids, basically on her own.  She’s nearly blind and walks with a cane (very slowly) but she still lives on her own, not wanting to leave the quiet home in the country that she finally got (and paid for) after years of hard work and bad judgment in husbands.  You know how everyone hashtags their online complaints with #firstworldproblems?  Yeah, my grandma would hashtag anything short of you losing a limb or becoming a widow as #spoiledyoungpeopleproblems.

But let’s get back to me, I was complaining because I knew there would be lots of pictures taken and I have this disgusting, scabby bump on my eyelid that can’t be hidden with make-up.  I swear it looks like I grew a third nipple on my eyelid.  It’s going to be removed soon – something else I was complaining about, because it involves sticking needles in my eyelid, followed by a process that my sweet husband referred to as “a little roto-rootering”- but in the meantime, I really didn’t want any pictures taken.

Grandma tells me I’m being silly, which is generally the beginning of every conversation with grandma in which I make the mistake of complaining about something.  She tells me that I shouldn’t be upset, because this is how I am today and the pictures will serve to remind me of that later.  I’m reminded of that as I lay in my Dad’s guest room, the walls are covered with old family pictures.  There’s my – now blue-haired teen – at age 7 in her First Communion Dress, standing in front of the priest.  I remember how hard it was to get her to agree to go get her picture taken up on the Altar with him.  There’s me when I was 19, wearing a black, lycra mini-dress – that dress and I had some good times together (remind me to tell you about it some time over cocktails).  My brother in his red bandana print shirt, chambray overalls and moccasins – because what else would you dress your two year-old in for a picture taken on a blue shag rug in Arizona in 1977?

Mike in his mocassins

It’s hard to remember the details of a day from the perfectly captured moments, though.  If you want to remember what your life was really like in that moment, you need to get a few imperfect moments.  Get the picture with the messy hair, the silly face – maybe even the scabby eyelid nipple.  Okay, maybe skip that last one, no one wants to see the scabby eyelid nipple.

Take a picture of yourself today, even if you think you should wait until you lose a few pounds, get some new clothes or a different haircut.  Capture your now, because now is pretty damn good.  And if you don’t believe me, I’ll put you in touch with my grandma.

Please share your thoughts.