Thirty-two years ago today, I was busy squeezing through my mother's nether-regions (maybe I should send her an apology card). Actually I like to think of myself as "bursting grandly forth into the world" instead of "squeezing" ... but tomato, tomah-to. Any way you slice it, it's my birthday and I'm 32 now. Which is good because I was totally tired of being thirty-one. Because when you look as vibrant and youthful as I do,* people get confused and I was sick of being all, "No no, I don't sell purses, thirty-one is my age."
*This actually may be a slight exaggeration since I did recently purchase alcohol without even being carded. Boo hiss.
Anyway, seeing as I'm kinda old-ish now, I'm going to start a new tradition. Every year on my birthday, I'm going to have a picture taken of my hands. Un-retouched, just as they are. Then in like forty years I'll get one of my tech-savvy grandchildren to make it into a time-lapsed video showing the age. With each photo, I'm going to write a little description of what my hands have been busy doing that year.
So here goes: year one. (Or year thirty-two, whichever.)
These are my hands today, at thirty-two years old. See the chipping DIY manicure? That's the story of my life. I try my best to keep things - including my nails - looking decent, but it's next to impossible sometimes. After all, I'm responsible for the care and keeping of a seven-year-old, a four-year-old, an almost-three-year-old, and a 12-week-old. And a husband. That's a lot of laundry, a lot of butt wiping (though thankfully not the husband's), a lot of dishes.
Right now in my life, these hands are helping me teach Zumba. They clap and wave and give pats on the back and encourage.
These hands are bathing three little boys who can still fit into the same bathtub, though not for much longer.
These hands are gripping the steering wheel of the minivan as I chauffeur my kids back and forth in the endless cycle of school obligations and doctor's appointments and extracurriculars.
These hands are holding the hands of a husband who, after almost fifteen years together, I'm still crazy about. Even if he does work too much at this point.
These hands are constantly cooking, cleaning, doing the thankless tasks that moms do to help keep our house feeling like a home.
These hands are clicking away on the laptop keyboard, though more in a personal capacity (blogging) than professional right now (working), which bugs me.
These hands are soothing a three-month-old baby, and changing tiny diapers, for the very last time. And when I think of it like that, it kinda makes me want to cry.
No time or expendable income for a professional manicure. It wouldn't stay intact for long, anyway. But that's okay, because this season of my life is more precious to me than having nice nails.
So there you have it. The first installment of my new yearly tradition. Be sure to check back in forty years for the time-lapse video!