"Is every one of Michele's family ridiculously good looking?"
... so an associate asked me a few years back. My boss' daughter was to be married in a few days, and extended family members from here-there-and-everywhere gathered to check-in.
Yes. To a person, their faces appeared to have been crafted by heavenly hosts.
I probably shouldn't say this out loud .... but it's been on my mind a while now. And at this stage of my life, I'm all about transparency.
For too many years, I might have disliked them - and their seemingly 'charmed lives' - on sight. For no good reason.
Since grade school, I resented those whose effortless good looks and charisma made me want to shrink further and further into the shadows. Janice's poignant "At Seventeen" may well have been written about yours truly.
Thank God, we grow and get over ourselves!
And learn what Real Beauty is all about.
Still, every now and then I wonder. What is it about the presence of others' larger-than-life appearances that makes us feel clumsy or inadequate?
Sure, every once in a great I can still hear a classmate's words, "Myra? You mean the one with the big nose?"
Then I reassure myself, recalling another similarly-afflicted soul's laugh: "All this oxygen we get to breathe, and I'm sure lucky to get more than the next fellow."
I was sobered recently by a news story whose headline teased: "What the Dying Really Regret."
As Erma Bombeck once lamented - I presumed the answer to be not taking more chances.
No. They regretted wasting so much time hating their own bodies! Isn't that incredibly sad?
Oh, and by the way.
One of Michele's "ridiculously good looking" family members - a vibrant young man with a lovely, loving wife and two little girls recently passed away from brain cancer ......at age 34.
Tommy's story is but one of hundreds, maybe thousands.
Didn't we used to refer to the Kennedy family as 'charmed'?
It's a little early to be talking about Thanksgiving, but I'm incredibly grateful to be right here, right now .... and especially for you allowing me to be part of your charmed lives.
I promise to be back with a more upbeat tone next time.