laugh lines

I remember the day I found my first gray hair. Well actually my husband found it. We were sitting in the mall, chatting and enjoying our Orange Julius when he began to stare at the top of my head. In one swift movement he had plucked one long, completely gray strand from my scalp. He showed it to me and said sooo casually, “Hmm look at that.”

I was in shock. I was in my late twenties then and hadn’t even begun to think about going gray. But here was my handsome, slightly younger husband, sitting in the mall holding my gray hair! Before that day coloring and highlighting my warm brown hair was an occasional splurge, but from that moment my hair was on maintenance.

Today I reached another milestone. As I examined my pores this morning I discovered it. Ever so slight. So subtle. Looking innocent enough when I smiled but lingering on long after the smile had faded my first laugh lines. Two to be exact, one on each side stretching from just outside my nose around the curve of my mouth. Oh sure they aren’t terribly pronounced now, you have to really be looking to see them, but they are there.

I must confess, I was a little sad. I’m not vain, (am NOT!). I don’t primp or spend lots of time on my looks (time is purely subjective here) I try to take good care of my skin, and I do my make up in about 10 minutes. I have always embraced the idea of aging, and I want to age gracefully. But this morning, it gave me pause. Before caring for my skin was something I did because it made me feel good. Now it’s maintenance! Like changing the oil in my car so it doesn’t implode on the freeway, I have to start taking my skin care seriously or I could be facing...dare I say it, botox! Kidding! no botox for me.

As I examined my face further I began to think about all the lines, and wrinkles that would follow these and felt myself being wistful about days, younger days, gone by. Then my angel whispered, “Laugh lines” to my heart. I had gotten those lines, from my laughter, my joy, my smiles, and my happiness. They were my babies first giggles, first steps, first Christmases. They were my husband’s goofy jokes, my years of carelessly embracing my inner-nerd and abandoning all pretenses to simply be myself and enjoy my family. Maybe I am a little young to be getting them, but then doesn’t that mean I have had an extraordinary amount of laughter in my life? In that case then, thank you Lord. Please bless me with many more signs of the joy you’ve given me and give me many more years to come.

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