Today I visited the “Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road Museum.” When I entered, the first thing I saw was the aging Mona Lisa hanging on the wall. I was shocked to see her there! So I had to ask…
Mona Lisa! What are you doing here? Aren’t you supposed to be in the Louvre in France?
MONA LISA: Yes. But I had to get away from the Leonardo Di Vinci branding thing. I mean, he was a great artist and all, but I’m getting older and I don’t want to be in his shadow till the end of time. The Mona Lisa painting was his creative vision, not mine. My own creative voice is dying to speak. I had to separate.
So, what’s your creative voice begging to blurt out?
MONA LISA: I’d love to tell the world the true, heartfelt reason I’m half smiling in my portrait.
Go for it.
MONA LISA: Well, years ago, on the morning Leonardo was painting my face, it was taking forever. I sat for hours and hours and hours. I was starving. I soooo needed a lunch break. So, I started thinking about all the awesome food I’d eat when we’d finally break for lunch.
MONA LISA: Bread, meat, fish, potatoes, tomatoes, kidney beans, Indian corn, chocolate, peanuts, pineapples, red and green peppers, turkeys and tapioca! And I’d wash it all down with a glass of wine.
Sounds good to me.
MONA LISA: The thought of all that food made me start to smile! But then! I stopped myself!
MONA LISA: Because I knew if I ate that feast, I’d put on weight. Quite honestly, I have the worst metabolism in the world. Whatever I eat, I wear. Immediately. I was afraid if I sat down and posed for the rest of my portrait, my stomach would stick out to the moon. Leonardo would have to repaint that section and he’d be furious!
I can imagine.
MONA LISA: So I stopped thinking of all that food and didn’t smile. But a second later, I started thinking of the food again because I was so hungry! I smiled! Then I stopped! I smiled! I stopped!
Hence the half smile. So what did you finally eat for lunch?
MONA LISA: Green peppers and tapioca. I tried to strike a balance. But here’s the bottom line. Now, as I’m much older, it seems like no matter what I eat, I put on weight.
I think for some of us, that’s a “new normal” that comes with aging.
MONA LISA: Maybe. But I’m hoping from now on, when people look at my portrait, they’ll relate to my ongoing struggle to stay at a healthy weight. I hope they’ll remember who I am and what I stood for. And in some way….maybe I’ll inspire them as well.
Well…Mona… by bravely sharing your longtime feelings and letting your true self shine through, you’ve set a glowing example for ME.