Years ago I did the monthly newsletter for a nursing home. Each month they had a featured "Queen" whose picture would be on the front page. I would interview the honoree and write up a brief story of her history and family. It was always interesting and often humbling.
This picture was attached to a humorous email forwarded to me. I confess that I chuckled when I first saw it. How ridiculous to plop a tiara on an old lady like that. But then I looked closer and noticed her near-sighted gaze. She could barely see anything, especially since no one had even bothered to clean her old glasses that had been laying in a drawer.
Apparently an aide had pulled some clothes on her but didn't bother to straighten the collar. They also didn't bother to comb her sparse hair and simply stuck a bobby pin in to hold the tiara in place for the duration of the event. Most disturbing are the ridiculous eyebrows drawn on her forehead. What was the point of that?
We don't know what the occasion might have been, maybe her 100th birthday. However, I don't sense any joy or pride (or even interest) in that tiny face--only hardship and weariness. Where is the honor in all this?
Even though few of us profess to want to live to 100, there is something about the hardiness of the people who do that inspires us. Still, if by some outlandishly freaky twist of fate I should survive to 100--please don't prop me up in the Day Room with a tiara and take pictures!