The Makeover

Photo by Mike Yakaites on

I’ve always enjoyed programming that features a makeover of some sort. I remember Oprah Winfrey bringing people onto her program who looked especially bedraggled and downtrodden. She’d send them away with experts in hair, makeup and styling then bring them back for a big reveal. They would return to the stage literally looking like different people. I was always amazed by what a good haircut and a bit of highlighting did for one’s appearance. Having clothing that was tailored was rather amazing as well. I often found myself wondering how I would look if the folks who performed such miracles took a crack at me.

I also love shows like This Old House where someone spends more money that I will ever see renovating a downtrodden property. I am always in awe of the architects and builders who bring a neglected home back to glory, but I also realize the expense of doing such things. I often wonder what it is like to have so much income or savings that people don’t have to scrimp on their projects. I also marvel at the outcomes and wonder if the homes are really as lovely as they appear on the screen. 

I suppose that I have reached a point in life of mostly satisfaction with my own appearance and that of my home. I have come to like myself just as I am, and as long as my house is in good working order I am comfortable with it just as it is as well. I believe in a regimen of checkups and repairs for both my body and my household. As the years pass by I find that my desires for a major do over have mostly faded. Somehow spending time and money recreating my looks or those of the rooms in my residence seems to be a waste of resources that might better be used elsewhere. 

I find contentment in liking myself and my home. If I were to make any changes in either of those things it would be to scale back. I find myself moving more and more to a life of greater simplicity. I rarely wear makeup anymore and I clothe myself in mostly jeans and t-shirts. I have way more room and more belongings than I really need. I more often think of sharing than acquiring. I suppose that my change might be attributed to growing comfortably into my own skin. 

It certainly took me long enough to reach a point of satisfaction. I admittedly wanted to please everyone and that often meant putting on a show in my own appearance and the presentation of my home. I suppose that the strange interlude of the Covid pandemic showed me what was really important in life. Somehow all of that time reflecting and seemingly observing from inside a fishbowl helped me to sort out who I really am and how I want to relate to the world. I learned whom I might count on to stand by me, and who would quickly drop me for no real reason. I found out what really made me happy and what mattered very little. I had time to get in touch with my feelings and to better understand those of others. I discovered a new and deeper gratitude for my own good fortune. 

I suppose that it might be argued that I actually had a makeover that was invisible to everyone but me. I walked into the past three years as one person and emerged miraculously different. In a kind of reverse of the usual do over I stripped away the facade that had been hiding the person that I had always wanted to be. It was as though I was born again with more confidence in and appreciation for for my life. The joy of such a realization has been immeasurable. 

I marvel at my good fortune and celebrate each breath that I am able to take. Just thinking about the simple glories of life makes me smile. Nonetheless, I consider what I might do to help those around me and those far away. I want to help them to experience the feeling of contentment and security that I have. I’ve spent more time understanding and speaking up for the souls who are suffering even as I am more satisfied with my own lot in life than I have ever before been. My self criticism and timidity are gone, shorn and reshaped as surely as a new haircut might improve my appearance. 

The old house that resides in my mind has been shored up and restored to glory, maybe even made better than ever before. I’d like to think that the new me is kinder, gentler and stronger than because I have miles to go and much to do before I settle into a long rest. Without having to worry about all that is superfluous my new path is clear. I’m ready to turn my attention to making every breath I take purposeful. 

I will still watch makeovers because they fascinate me, but the envy that once colored my opinion of such things is gone. I have what I need. I don’t require more. I am now freer than ever before.  


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