Sometimes the “A” word makes me shudder, like when you hear an eerie story that makes your arm hair stand straight on up, sometimes it makes me calm as the cutest sleeping baby you’ve ever seen. (Is anything more tranquilizing?) It depends on the light, I guess. It depends on where it is I’m standing.
As the years pile up, acceptance becomes easier to friend, not so difficult to embrace in a sincere bear hug. There are certain things that no longer seem to be worth fighting against. Things that were not really ever possible, but that you thought just had to be possible. The letting go is like stripping yourself naked on an absurdly hot day and running with your arms overhead into the roaring ocean (arms must be overhead for accurate and intended experiential simile).
I will never be on an “under 30, authors to watch” list. Despite intense longing and prayer to the contrary, my dad and I share the same DNA. I will never again weigh 115 (unless, and God forbid, I contract a serious illness that makes the pounds slide off like an expensive silk nighty from the expensive silky nighty department at Agent Provocateur). I’m not going to marry George Clooney. I’m not going to have an illustrious career as a ballerina, model, movie star, fill in ridiculous childhood wannabe career here. But I can still be a lot of things. Many of them really possible. Realistic expectations aren’t dreary, they’re hopeful. Ah, acceptance.
I was always trying to re-write the not-so-nice parts of my life. As if I could. I knew it was silly. But still, I hung on the idea. I kept thinking if I wished hard enough, long enough, maybe. But what I’ve learned, is history doesn’t need to be re-written, so much as digested, and processed, and sprinkled generously on, and throughout your life, like Miracle Grow plant food This is acceptance. It gets a little harder as you get older. And a whole lot easier.