About 6 months ago a rash suddenly appeared around the corners of my mouth. The rash was accompanied by a ferocious case of chapped lips. I have worn a goatee and mustache style beard for several years so the rash didn’t show to the casual observer and I was keeping my chapped lips at bay with generous applications of coconut oil.
After exhausting investigation of internet rash sites I relented and visited our family physician, Dr. Ying. Dr. Ying throughly examined my face and declared with the certainty that can only be gained from Harvard Medical School, “I think it is a fungus….or something.”
For more than 6 months I treated my condition with oils, anointments, salves and creams. During this time I stopped shaving in order to conceal my delicate condition. Additionally I didn’t want the daily trauma of a razor against my tender rash.
So several months pass and my rash eventually clears up. I think my rash had a life of its own and my applications had no effect what so ever. Not wanting to appear as the fourth member of ZZ Top, I trimmed my beard regularly with the Wahl 5537 electric trimmer that I have previously written about. The look is kind of half shaven scruffy old man. If westerns were still being produced I could have been a character actor these past few month.
Today I shaved. Yippee! I’m back. The funny things is the ever observant Joy Ann didn’t notice. I had coffee with my Dad this morning. He didn’t notice either. When Grayson came into work this morning….not a peep about my clean shaven look.
That’s the way the world works. We look but we don’t always see. I remember coming home from college and being shocked at how old my parents looked. The truth is when I looked at my parents I was not really seeing them as they were. It took being away for a few months for me to see them as they really were.
Sometimes I get all caught up in what I think is important only to learn it wasn’t important at all.
You know what…. It’s not the beard or the problem or the rash….. all of us are bigger and more important than the details of our lives.
Tonight is sunset, drinks and dinner at my sisters. There will be lots of family and friends and I bet not a single one will notice that I shaved. I bet everyone will recognize how much we each care about each other, how blessed we all are, how much we have to be thankful for and how much we have to look forward to.
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Manzie R Lawfer