Shaky hands, tremors, weakness, and I feel repulsed. It means to me fragility, raw aged gnarled, and dying. And I can’t bear to look at my dad in this weakened light. His joints are stiff as he walks, hands hold tight to the coffee carafe, “another cup?” he asks. It’s his birthday, he’s 85. The years have been healthy, with only a few days of exceptions.
I see myself in the mirror as I try again to apply liquid eyeliner. How many times? My fingers are so accustomed to applying makeup I could do it in the dark. Lip gloss was the neutral beginning. My parents then allowed me to try the bright blue eyeshadows of the 1970s. Eye makeup would be more effortless if my hands were steady, dammit. I clean off the goofs with a q-tip.