Navy Blue Eyebrows and the S. of O. A.

Dec 4, 2022 | 0 comments


Mom at Sweet Sixteen

It’s with that first glance of myself in the mirror each morning that I often hear my mother’s sighing whisper — “Oh, the Secrets of Old Age.”  Though she never revealed exactly what those were, I find that I am, by now, discovering a few for myself.

Take the time, years ago, that Jan Erikson was doing nails… My mother was leaving as I was arriving for my appointment and Jan said quietly, “Did you notice?”

“What???” I was gormless, as usual.

“Your mom’s eyebrows were navy blue!”

Mom at 86

We discussed whether I should mention it to her and I finally decided not to in the “This too shall pass” frame of mind.  It did and she was soon back to her usual (and not so unusual) fashion statements.  She was always dressed to the  nines and I can still here my dad saying to her when she readied herself for a special occasion, “You look like a million bucks!”

It wasn’t until I was in my late sixties and mom, though deep into her own world of dementia, was still making fashion statements at the Nursing Home, that I discovered my very first “S. of O. A.”  I could no longer distinguish between my navy blue socks and my black ones.  Cataracts were the culprit — and I was so sorry I hadn’t spoken to her about those eyebrows.  She did in fact, have cataract surgery later which helped for a while.

Mom at 92

All that also put me in mind of a boyfriend I once had (we might have even been engaged for a minute) who told me with great self-confidence (he was an artist) that my mother wore too much makeup.  And by the way, he told me, “so do you.”  Well, all I can say is that with those statements he revealed some of his own secrets.  I didn’t stick around long enough to see how he would weather into his own old age…

On the other hand, I do very much admire women of my own age who have never worn makeup at all.  They look fabulous — great skin tones, everything in sync, and they probably don’t have S. of O. A. thoughts with that first glimpse in the mirror each morning.  Hindsight.  (Maybe that’s another one…)


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