“You’re…” she began the standard reply. Before she could finish, I leaned closer and flirtatiously said, “And that smile.”
She blushed a little and smiled, the way an older married woman does after receiving a compliment from a younger gentleman. Needless to say, my glass was always filled throughout the night.
About twenty-five minutes later and a few refills, the waitress ushered our party to our seats. I sat next to a friend, who shared with our section of the large table her recent epiphany while away in the hills of a lowly populated Wyoming city.
I intensely listened as she described her realization of herself; no longer concerned with issues of her weight and physical appearance (sidenote: she’s beautiful, but beauty does not stop societal pressures and expectations that repeatedly stomp one’s self-esteem), no longer clamoring for the attention of men who [there were a litany of offenses], no longer thinking she wasn’t good enough for the people and things she wanted, and no longer worried about things out of her control. My shortened list does not do her epiphany justice.
As I listened, I wondered why does it take many people years, in some cases lifetimes, of hurt, disappointment, failure, and more hurt before the proverbial light shines and they realize whatever it is meant for them to realize.
The bottomless red wine in my glass led to the only answer that my near intoxicated brain could figure: perfection is boring. The difficult obstacles, both internal and external, make life worthy of living because when that epiphany strikes all suddenly makes sense. Though there is undoubtedly more to “figure out” that initial moment is resplendent. Those difficulties are instantly replaced, even if temporarily, with hope, happiness, and a healthy self-esteem.
I wish her, myself, and all of you red wined epiphanies: endless.