I read, a lot, as a matter of fact I can’t remember a time I didn’t love words, I used to beg my grandpa to read to me. I asked so much that when I was four years old he taught me to read, after that we read together, me with my book, him with his. His was mostly the bible and study books on the bible. Have I ever mentioned how smart my grandpa was? He was so smart, kind, funny and present, I know I have said it before, but he really was my first hero, father figure and love of my life. I believe the term love of my life gets bandied about too much in the romantic realm. He was very literally my everything from birth till the day he died, he was my protector, my mentor and someone that told me daily I could be anything I wanted to be in this world.
Back to the reading thing, one of my favorite authors, Jude Deveraux, released a new book, one in a series, it is the Nantucket Bride series, this one is Ever After. Now, I know what you are all thinking, seriously, she loves a romance novel writer? Why yes I do, I have loved her for a long time, her books have gotten me through some of the roughest times in my life. They have provided a well needed escape when I felt I could not handle one more thing, I could lose myself in a world where my issues weren’t prevalent. I would come back, refreshed and ready to go, none of this takes away from reliance on God during these times. I feel I must add that, He gave this woman a gift with words and I took advantage of that gift and have read everything she has written over the years. I will continue to read everything she writes in the future.
The latest book, the last in this series, was particularly good, overall I highly enjoyed it, however, one sentence threw me for a loop. The main male character is asked by his father how he feels about the heroine of the story; he says “the first time I saw her I was dizzy with lust’. An honest answer, it wasn’t love at first sight, it was lust at first sight. Which is, if we are honest with ourselves, what comes first. Love is getting to know someone, accepting their strength along with their flaws.
The thing that threw me, was I have never had anyone feel that way about me, and it depressed me, for a day, then I was ok. But it was the day that I took a hard look at myself, physically, and looked back at myself over the years. There were times I know for a fact NO human would have looked at me like that. I gained so much weight it wasn’t even funny. But when I was younger I was pretty and physically fit. I find I am taken aback by the fact that I missed my opportunity to have someone look at me in that way.
At the age of 51 no man is ever going to look at me and become dizzy with lust, maybe when I was 19 and looked good, but now I am way too old. The thought saddens me in a way I cannot begin to explain, I wish I could go back and have a conversation with 19-year-old Angie and tell her to enjoy her youth. She was so pretty, funny, smart and, well mouthy, she spoke before she thought, but that was part of her charm and her curse. Sometimes I miss her, her boldness, her ability to rush forward without thinking of the consequences.
If you are young and reading this, enjoy your youth, be aware of your power, trust that God is going to put you on the path you should be on and enjoy that path. Take chances, try new things, take care of your body, exercise and eat well. Because let me tell you, all of the junk eating catches up to you, in one form or another.
I will still be sad that no one has ever looked at me the way the character in the book looked at the heroine. Nothing can change that, but I will do my best to enjoy my life right now, to take care of my body and try and undo some of the damage I have done to it over the years. Not with drugs, alcohol or tobacco, but with inactivity and poor eating choices.