by Dorothy Parker
In youth, it was a way I had
To do my best to please,
And change, with every passing lad,
To suit his theories.
But now I know the things I know,
And do the things I do;
And if you do not like me so,
To hell, my love, with you!
I recently happened upon this poem by Dorothy Parker. I suppose it's sad to say that it resonated with me, even though I certainly hope that I haven't yet entered the Indian Summer of my life.
Beginning in high school, I was definitely guilty of that chameleon-like behavior which Dorothy describes so laconically. I kept it up until The Child came along, and at that point I seem to have taken on Ms. Parker's Indian Summer attitude.
I have a theory which resulted from my awareness of that phenomenon: maybe my former "lad-pleasing" behavior was actually inspired, unbeknownst to me, by a biological urge to reproduce. Once that happened, I was allowed to be myself and let the chips (or lads) fall as they may.
I have always preferred to do my own thing, although, admittedly, there are those rare occasions when it would be nice to have a companion. When the Child grows up and flies the coop, there will be a void.
Maybe then I'll have to revert to my youthful ways.
Meanwhile, here are a couple of shots from my walk in the park today: