Thursday, May 3, 2012

Magical Thinking

My husband took that picture of me. He takes all the photos of me that I can stand. My daughter took one I didn't mind the other day, but it's my man who has the real gift of snapping a picture of me and not having me delete it on sight. I'm so vain and childishly insecure. You'd think I'd have matured beyond this by now.

I called my brother, the doctor, to ask him whether I should take some medicine my doctor has prescribed. I didn't want any side effects. I sounded like a whiny two year old. The side effects of not taking the medicine will be greater, he said, like he was talking to said two year old. I observed that Aunt Winnie started slip sliding downhill when she started taking medicines for this ailment and that. He said, No, she started taking pills because she was slip sliding downhill, not the other way around. And he said, You are 55 years old today. Think back to when we were 15. We thought people our age were old. Now that we're here, we don't feel old, and in fact we aren't old, but for most of us, medicine has entered the picture. Go ahead and swallow that pill. I know he loves me, so I meekly agreed.

My son called to wish me happy birthday first thing this morning! He was walking across campus to hand in the last paper of his junior year. He competes in hurdles, high jump and pole vault at States this weekend and has final exams next week and then he'll be a senior. We had a warm, meandering convo about summer jobs, and taxes and post-college plans. He very much wants to contribute to the financial support of this family, including his sister's college expenses, which I find to be such a beautiful intention. He's knows his dad and I are busy hoarding every penny for college tuition. But we're going to be fine. I believe that.


  1. Look at you how beautiful!
    Happy Birthday, 55 years young.
    I know what you mean about pills and side effects, they scare me too. But then I look at my dad who as you know is 90 and aside from the latest glitch, going strong. All thanks to the wonders of modern medicine.

    Have a wonderful birthday, and many many more to come.

    love deirdre xoxoxo

  2. You look like my Cajun cousin Judy in this picture. She was fun growing up with. She had mischief in her. Open your arms to the love and warmth that flow through your family—so many of us do not have that—and do what your brother says and take the damn pill already. It's good for you. One thing I've learned is that sometimes the side effects are fun. But don't tell. They don't like for that to get out.

  3. You look beautiful and I hope all your side effects are good ones! Yeah, it's something to realize that once you start the pill you will be taking it forever. Most likely. I like your cousin doctor's explanation about the relationship of slip sliding and taking pills.

  4. It is a beautiful picture!!

    This is a lovely piece on its own, you know. You are a powerful writer.

  5. a glorious birthday to you. you are a profoundly beautiful woman. rest easy; the first 55 are the hardest, dear.

  6. Beautiful eyes -- and happy birthday!

  7. That is a beautiful photo -- but I know what you mean about vanity and childishness. I'm the same way --

    As for the medicine, I hope it does what it's supposed to. You are NOT old!

    And your son sounds so remarkable -- so very remarkable.

  8. I have never heard of a brother wishing to support his sister through college. For that alone he deserves praise. You must feel so proud of him.

    Happy birthday.

  9. Thank you, Andrea! Nice to see you!

    dierdre, happy birthday again to your dad! love.

    Glenn, i think we both have mischief in us, too! thank you dear, friend! i love looking like someone you love.

    Kristin, that smart advice came from my brother. so odd that this childhood partner in mischief (ha!) is a sober voice of reason now.

    Chrissy, thank you, friend. the writing, whatever it is, keeps me sane.

    Candice, thanks for the birthday wishes! xo

    Susan, whew! That is good news! Thanks, and hugs.

    Pam, thank you for gracing this place.

    Elizabeth, my son amazes me sometimes, and yesterday I was so touched because when I came home he had sent me beautiful flowers for my birthday. My son?? Slowly by slowly...

    Cro, he is a good boy, very responsible yet loves his fun. could be a good combo, right?

  10. Happy Birthday you gorgeous creature! I know what you mean about having your picture taken and vanity and all that. I too suffer. Only thing is there is no one I know who can take a picture of me I can stand! Lucky you.

  11. Dear Yolie, I've seen your face and it is just beautiful. Even more, full of character and old soulness. I love your face.

  12. Happy Birthday Angella! Love that photo. You are beautiful!

  13. Happy Birthday! You look amazing and should have more pictures of you taken.

  14. Happy Birthday to you, your beautiful in side and out, and it just shines from this picture.
    I feel much the same way you do about medicines, so leery of side effects, especially the tired ones, I'm already tired enough, thank you. But your brother is wise and his words are true.
    Your son is a fine young man. And you're all going to be fine, I believe it too.

  15. ♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪ Happy Birthday ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪ to YOU ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪ Happy Birthday ♥ ♥ ♥ to YOU ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪ Happy Birthday dear anGeLA ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪... Happy Birthday to You ♪♫•*¨*•.¸¸♥ ¸¸.•*¨*•♫♪...

  16. Happy Birthday! I always reflect on the things my mom has taught me about getting older. Although she comments that she doesn't feel as old as she looks she is always grateful for another year of health and love. You have both. There are some things that seem inevitable (like a pill every so often perhaps) but keep the mischief in your beautiful eyes and enjoy the blessings. Much love to you on this special day. xo

  17. Angella -

    I wrote my comment and then read the others and was surprised to see that mischief came up already. Funny. I guess your playful side is on display.


  18. i never "let" anyone take my picture, so i think it's cool you've got someone who can pull it off!!

    you really are beautiful, angella.

    happy belated birthday.

  19. Happy birthday, sweet sister. You are my kindred spirit. Praying that it was full of awesome just like you.

  20. Happy birthday, Angella! I love your birthday picture. As for medicine, I would be just as suspicious as you -- I hate taking pills -- but it sounds like your brother knows what he's talking about. Hope those lemon meringue cupcakes were awesome!