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Funny how your perspective on life changes | Opinion | The Press and Standard

by | August 28, 2016 5:00 pm

Last Updated: August 24, 2016 at 1:18 pm

It’s funny how your perspective on life changes as you get older. When I was 25, I never imagined that…
 A terrific weekend would be cooking quinoa with my husband and obsessively watching videos of a dog diving for lobster.
 Roosters would be my favorite pets.
 I’d still be unable to sew or speak a second language. I can, however, peel a potato in 30 seconds.
 A heated disagreement over the best Jason Bourne movie would cause my brother to hang up on me. And vice-versa.
 I’d watch my dying mother’s eyes shine with joy and grace.
 I could speak at her funeral and make people laugh through tears.
 A famous Olympian would opt out of his gender.
 There’d come a day when I’d rather watch a Stones documentary than go to a Stones concert.
 I’d marry a man who’d love me in spite of my tremendous flaws.
 Meat and dairy would be banished from my life. Lord, I miss bacon. And sour cream.
 I’d still be struggling with my temper 30 years later.
 Running shoes would become my favorite gear. Ditto for yoga pants.
 I’d still actively avoid manicures and massages. The thought of a stranger holding my hand or stroking my body makes me light-headed with horror. Yes, I know this is deeply weird. (Add the fact that two of my siblings are licensed massage therapists, and it becomes even weirder.)
 I’d have a smart, funny, loyal, handsome stepson. Talk about a bonus!
 My beloved brother, T-Bob, would politically lean to the right of John Wayne. This is a guy who put the “art” in party and never walked away from a good time.
 Speaking of T-Bob, who knew we’d become so close that we talked or texted every day? We communicate more now than we did in 18 years under the same roof.
 I’d ever stop drinking wine coolers. I loved your fruity, fizzy flavor, Bartles & Jaymes.
 The race for the White House would devolve into black, bitter comedy.
 I’d still be terrified of frogs.
 Life doesn’t stop when people you love die. It’s amazing how a broken heart can keep beating.
 I’d read fewer than two books a month. Two books used to be a Friday night.
 Men would be wearing guyliner. It’s a thing, I’ve seen it.
 I’d be Episcopalian by birth but Methodist by geography. (We live a block from the church.)
 Purses and shoes would become something I cared about, even a tiny bit. (I carried the same fringed boho bag from eighth grade through college, until one day it literally fell apart on my shoulder.)
 I’d be living in a different state with my second husband. Heck, at 25 I had no inkling that I’d marry at 26, or divorce at 37.
 “Criminal Minds” would become my greatest obsession, besides cashews.
 I wouldn’t have a pet and be okay with that.
 Cooking would remain my Achilles heel.
 I would eat salmon in Alaska, conch in Key West and sourdough in San Francisco.
 I’d write a book that hundreds of people bought. (This still astounds me.)
 “Designer dogs” would be all the rage. First of all, they’re not designer, they’re crossbreeds, i.e. mutts. Second, adopt not shop, y’all!
 I’d ever eat tomatoes without a gun to my head.
 My home would be in a town with fewer people than my college graduating class.
 Bill Cosby would not be remembered for folksy humor or Pudding Pops.
 I’d voluntarily stop drinking Diet Mt. Dew. It can be done, people.

(Julie R. Smith, who is surprised by most things, can be reached at

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