Dances With Wolves
In the Native American culture, a name describes who a person is, and so should change as the person changes.
I love this concept. Especially since I do not love Nancy. And I am certainly not the Nancy I used to be.
So, in the mode of “Dances With Wolves,” I present to you my names through my evolution.
Age 3: Hankers For Hair
Yes, I was a bald baby. And I stayed that way until Kindergarten. You may think a toddler doesn’t care much about hair. Think again.
Age 5: Cries About Everything
This was a long stage. It may still be my middle name.
Age 10: Eats Only Hotdogs
All kids go through a fussy period. Mine drove my distraught mother to the doctor, who gave this sage advice: “So let her eat hotdogs.”
Age 16: Looks About Ten
My perfectly round face and perfectly flat chest did nothing to attract boys. Everybody told me I would be happy later in life that I looked so young. They were right. But it did not comfort me.
Age 20: Majors in Transferring
This is what my parents called me for about seven years. I liked college. I stayed as long as possible.
Age 30: Concentrates on Career
I had several aliases during this period. I was also called:
Works Every Weekend
Suffers Through Meetings
Agrees with Idiots
Doesn’t Have Boyfriend
Age 40: Walks Down Aisle
I got married. I let one of those weird aliens with the hangy-down things into my house. It’s been an adjustment. Just today I wondered whether he had been cooking orange paint in the formerly non-stick pan.
Age 54: Caves on Career
I gave up the every-weekend, no-life, high-stress, screamed-at job. I took a reasonable job. I’m poorer. But I’m alive.
Age 63: Obsesses With Youth
Why, when my whole youth was spent trying to look older, do I now desire to look younger? And if I want so badly to be younger, why do I also want to retire? I just can’t decide whether I want Accutane or Medicare.