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I get really close to her face, trying to hold the eyeliner pencil steady. Don’t move I say. Stay still I say. She closes her eyes and I lightly draw with the soft brown pencil. Next, the eyeshadow. First dark, then medium, then light. She opens her eyes and smiles and says, I like your hair Mommy. I glance in the mirror assessing her comment. Thank you, although not a huge fan of the color right now. But she replies, I like the silvery parts. I like how it’s a lot of different colors right now.

What looks back at me isn’t the face I think I’ll see. It looks back at me as somebody older and quite a bit more tired than I'd like. What looks back at me isn’t the bright blonde person I want to see but a sandy blonde with streaks of silver and white hidden under the top layer.

Photo by Plush Design Studio on Unsplash

Every morning from when my grandma reached about my age, she got up, ate breakfast and then head back to her room. I’m going to go put on my face, she'd say. As a child I remember sneaking around the corner to spy on Grandma putting on her face. She sat a little desk with the round concave mirror, magnifying her features. With a steady hand, steadier then my eyeliner pencil could ever be, she added definition to her eyebrows and eyelashes. She added cream to keep her cheeks looking youthful. When grandma was about 60 the steady hand begin to diminish so she chose to have her eyebrows tattooed over her eyes so she would know where to draw. (Maybe my ages and remembering is a little off-date.)

I like your hair {Mommy}. I like the silvery parts.

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