Friday, March 22, 2013

It's What's Inside...

I took some of the tiny painted (pseudo) Russian Nesting Dolls on our spring break to give to Karen and her good buddies when we went out for a girls' supper. Seeing that we are all over 50 now, (!) I thought a meditation on the shape of our lives at this stage was in order, so I wrote a little essay to read when I gave them out.
It's What's Inside That Counts

So your shape is a little more on the babuska side now.  You know that’s just so all your accumulated awesomeness still fits comfortably inside you.

Over the years your shape has changed, inside and out. Remember: It’s what’s inside that counts.

*All those meals you planned and made-They count.
 *All the time on the phone and miles in the car and hours on committees and managing other people’s social schedules-They count.
 *All the noses wiped, pants changed, socks picked up, groceries bought, beds made, dishes done, pets fed and trained and taken to the vet, all the floors and stools and houses cleaned-They count.
 * All the banquets attended, dresses shopped for, suits pressed and cleaned and all those spousal needs met-They count.
 * All the birthdays planned, relatives hosted, cards and gifts sent, healthcare obtained, relationships soothed-They count.
 *All the school forms filled out and signed, all the college paperwork attended to, all the bills paid, all the household money managed-They count.
 *All the wash done… and done… and done….It counts.

The young, skinny, beautiful you (the one with hip bones and energy) is still in there. She is the past you, the young you, the earnest and not-so-experienced you. She’s just been wrapped in all the sacrificial hours of loving service you have given to others over the years. Remember that she is older, yes, but also wiser. Remember that, like a Russian Nesting Doll…It’s what’s inside that counts.


  1. Beautifully written, Jannell! Very encouraging -- Thanks.

  2. My friends and I absolutely loved receiving your dolls and the wonderful words that lifted us up. We women are so hard on ourselves thanks to a society that values outer beauty more than the person inside. Your words reminded us that we are indeed valuable.