On aging and contentment

by arianne

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This is me in all my glory.  No makeup to cover the wrinkles or blotchy face or blemishes or dry lips or nonexistent eyebrows or drab and gray peppered roots. Nothing to make my eyes wake up any more, nothing to whiten my teeth, nothing to clean my hair, just me. Unedited.  Gasp!

Aging but young, heartbroken but healing, squishy but working on it.  Me.

Today is my birthday, and it’s the first time in many years that I have felt this content.  This realization today? That I’m so content?  Well, it shocked me to the core.  I had to examine it further, because it didn’t seem logical.  Content? The grieving mother of a lost baby with boys with autism struggling each day whose “baby weight” is not coming off whose husband is still jobless?  Yeah.  It’s true.

Here I am.  And I boldly state that these circumstance are the reason I’m content, not that I’m content in spite of them.

Once husband turns the camera on me and I have a moment to upcloseandpersonal see what state I am in for this new age.  Here is what I see:

Wrinkle lines from concentrating so hard on my writing, tired eyes from waking early to tiny happy sounds beckoning the day from the crib, rumpled hair and clothes from staying in bed long enough to cuddle each and every boy (even the grown one) in this house.

How did I get to this place, with this tired face and this healing heart and these hard times and sit here so incredibly content?  How is it I look at my photo and feel….

b e a u t i f u l ?

{It occurs to me that beauty would have a different definition if makeup and everything we (I) do to ourselves to look better had never been invented.  An obvious thought, yet one we can’t lose perspective on.  Ever.}

It’s not a magic pill or a special diet or perfect circumstances (though I’m sure those would be great too).

The intimacy. Supernatural intimacy, with the One and Only. Time, just He and I and my questions and His answers and my screaming and His mighty hands to shush and comfort.  His Word to point out how so very often I need to fall into Grace.  His Word reminding me that I am so beautiful to Him, I am washed anew by Him and I am, forever, His.

His Word reminding me that He didn’t come to make me comfortable.  He came to save me.

Ahhh yes.  The salvation.  The whole point.  The perspective.

But what does that mean? What does this intimacy look like?

For me, it’s like this:  Prayer that isn’t 5 minutes long with a laundry list of wants {the wants can wait for later, after praises are given}.  Prayer that is worship and simply telling God how wonderful He is. Prayer that is just listening and just being and staying there in that place to just be with Him.

Do you ever pray to just be with Jesus?

Prayer that is restful and loving and vulnerable and intimate.

Oh the aching learning that has brought me here.  Oh how I understand and weep and give thanks.

The aging, the learning, the beauty in the untouched.

Contentment.

***

Inspired by this post from the effervescent GypsyMama.

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