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I Feel Bad About My Neck by Nora Ephron – Almost a Book Review
Nora Ephron Dies Aged 71
Author and scriptwriter, Nora Ephron, aged 71, died in June 2012 as a result of pneumonia. Ms Ephron was well known for her romantic comedies including the scripts, 'When Harry Met Sally' and 'Sleepless in Seattle'.
Nora Ephron Thoughts on Being a Woman
Nora Ephron received mixed reviews about her book, ‘I Feel Bad About My Neck – and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman’. However, it was good enough that Oprah Winfrey felt it worthwhile critiquing on her highly popular television show. Nora Ephron is actually sensitive about her neck from a scar. While the jury may still be out, I think it is worth taking a look at some of the messages she is attempting in this sometimes hilarious, sometimes serious insight into the highs and lows of being a woman as the beauty of youth leaves her. But first, I would like to share my personal experience of moving from a youthful miss to a woman with age.
The Naïveté of Youth – I’m in my Twenties
Is that a wrinkle? Just below my eye. I can’t believe it, but yes, there it is, the start of the dreaded crow’s feet on my face staring back at me in the mirror. Confirmed! I’m an old woman or might as well be. It is there, right in front of me, in front of my very own eyes in fact. And so the journey begins. But wait, there are preventative measures, I can dose myself with creams and moisturisers twice a day, if need be, to fend off the evil that lurks in the shadows.
The Development of Beauty – I’m in my Thirties
The creams I applied in my twenties worked to a certain extent but nothing could stop those persistent fine lines that have now etched themselves into my face in much the same way as an oil painting develops. There is no alternative but to accept the soft wrinkles that kiss the edges of my eyes and, over time, I know I must learn to love what they convey. After all, my smile lines let everyone know I have had a happy life. I smile a lot and that is why the youthful face of my twenties has developed into a painting as exquisite as the Mona Lisa and yet the highlights of my face lets everyone know I have had joy and wonder a plenty in my life.
Nora Ephron's Books
The Transition – I’m in my Forties
The moisturising has been relentless. As diligent as cleaning my teeth, a ritual takes place, night and day and sometimes in between depending on my external activities. I would be bereft if the sun caught my face without the SPF15+ protection that I was so blasé about in my teens. Alas, it is too late. The damage has been done in my youth. Not only do I remember when, but I have photos to prove that once, long ago, my skin had the alabaster look of only the finest romance novel heroines.
That look is, of course, a distant memory but I still see something that pleases me when I look in the mirror. I know from this day forward I will be constantly seeking the latest in skin care products in a vain attempt to recapture those days of my youth.
The Getting of Wisdom – I’m in my Fifties
Yes, I have the neck that Nora Ephron talks about in her book. Yes, I have many lines in my face that now resembles a road map with all the fine tributaries represented by capillary veins and major roads depicted by thick creases that mark my brow. None of it matters anymore. My husband asks me out to dinner for our anniversary and I attempt to apply some make up the same as I have been doing for the past thirty something years. It takes longer now, to achieve a smooth, even finish with my foundation. Even the mascara struggles to find the fine lashes at the edge of my eye line but at the end of it all, I look fine. My husband says, wow, you look gorgeous – and that’s all that matters.
Do I Feel Bad About My Neck? – as Nora Ephron Suggests
Mostly I don’t even notice it, but yes, occasionally and especially looking at photos. It is the photos that hurt the most. Looking in the mirror is always preferable to looking at a recent photo. Is the camera more severe these days? Does it show more than it used to or is there more to show now?
I’m comfortable with where I am and proud of where I’ve come from. There are a few more wrinkles under my chin and my bosom has decided that Newton was most apt in his theory of gravity, but this is irrelevant. I know as an older woman I don’t have the same expectations from the community as to how I should look. In fact, I can now wear what I choose and create a look to please me without minding about what any one else may think of the final result. It’s a good feeling.
Copyright © 2010 Karen Wilton