Today I wore odd earrings. I didn’t mean to, but I noticed half way through the day that I had put on two totally different earrings. I know years ago I seemed to lose one of a pair of earrings and decided that rather than not wearing the remaining earrings I would mix and match and wear a different earring in each ear. My grand-daughters must be cut from the same cloth, because they do the same thing with their socks. They regularly just grab two socks and are not bothered about whether they match. In fact, they rather seem to celebrate the fact of their mismatched hosiery.
It brings to mind a poem I know that illustrates a somewhat rebellious nature in our latter years.
“Warning” by Jenny Joseph
When I am an old woman I shall wear purple,
With a red hat which doesn’t go, and doesn’t suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves,
And satin sandals, and say we’ve no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I’m tired,
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells,
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain,
And pick flowers in other people’s gardens,
And learn to spit.
You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat,
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go,
Or only bread and pickle for a week,
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes.
But now we must have clothes that keep us dry,
And pay our rent and not swear in the street,
And set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.
But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised,
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.
So, why not wear purple, or miss-matching earrings, or socks that don’t match. Life is too short to bow to convention. To do what we ‘ought’ to do. To do what is expected of us. So, I am not waiting till I grow old – I am only 61 – I shall wear purple. I shall wear odd socks, if the mood takes me. I shall wear earrings that don’t match. I shall do and say what suits me. For it is my life and while Parkinson’s may seek to impose some restrictions upon me, I shall choose to be different. To be unconventional if I wish to. To wear odd socks. To be odd myself if that is what I need to be. To celebrate my ‘purpleness’ my difference that makes me, me.
Life is too short to be constrained by convention and society’s expectations. Be odd. Be proud to be odd. Be you in all your glory, whatever that looks like and don’t be limited by societal expectations.
I am proud to be me, whatever mood takes my fancy.
Life is too short not to embrace our uniqueness.