Pretty’s advice to her younger self


“If you could go back to that 34 year old attorney from Vermont beginning the first of 48 years as a United States Senator, would you have any advice for him?” asked Robert Costa during his CBS Sunday Morning interview with retiring Senator Patrick Leahy who at 82 years old is the fourth longest serving person in the Senate.

Senator Leahy responded something about telling the young man nothing was impossible if you persevered, dream big, be your best self – you get the idea. Inspirational. Conventional wisdom from a seasoned New Englander who was the first of his family to graduate from college way back when.

Of course Pretty and I were watching the interview together this morning – it’s a tradition she introduced to me when we first got together more than twenty years ago – at the same time she introduced me to Sex and the City (the TV show). CBS Sunday Morning at 9 o’clock – Sex and the City on Sunday nights.

During the next commercial break I turned to Pretty and asked her if she had any advice for her 30 year old self. Without skipping a beat she replied:

“Exercise more. Eat less. Save money.” I burst out laughing, shaking my head in disbelief.

“I don’t know how you could have exercised any more, ” I said to her back as she walked toward the kitchen. “You’ve played tennis your entire adult life, you do manual labor in the antique empire every day we aren’t chasing after a toddler granddaughter who has the energy of a bunny battery – I’m saying you’ve definitely done your share of exercise through the years.”

“Yeah, that’s right,” she said from the kitchen where she fixed a big bowl of grits and three pieces of Sunbeam King Thin enriched bread toast (with lots of butter) for her breakfast.

“What about you?” she asked as she sat down with her food. “What would you say to your 30 year old self?”

“Stay away from married women,” I answered. Pretty laughed and nodded.

Thank goodness the commercial break was over before we got to saving money.

About Sheila Morris

Sheila Morris is a personal historian, essayist with humorist tendencies, lesbian activist, truth seeker and speaker in the tradition of other female Texas storytellers including her paternal grandmother. In December, 2017, the University of South Carolina Press published her collection of first-person accounts of a few of the people primarily responsible for the development of LGBTQ organizations in South Carolina. Southern Perspectives on the Queer Movement: Committed to Home will resonate with everyone interested in LGBTQ history in the South during the tumultuous times from the AIDS pandemic to marriage equality. She has published five nonfiction books including two memoirs, an essay compilation and two collections of her favorite blogs from I'll Call It Like I See It. Her first book, Deep in the Heart: A Memoir of Love and Longing received a Golden Crown Literary Society Award in 2008. Her writings have been included in various anthologies - most recently the 2017 Saints and Sinners Literary Magazine. Her latest book, Four Ticket Ride, was released in January, 2019. She is a displaced Texan living in South Carolina with her wife Teresa Williams and their dogs Spike, Charly and Carl. She is also Naynay to her two granddaughters Ella and Molly James who light up her life for real. Born in rural Grimes County, Texas in 1946 her Texas roots still run wide and deep.
This entry was posted in family life, Humor, Life, Personal, Random, Reflections, Slice of Life, The Way Life Is, The Way Life Should Be and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Pretty’s advice to her younger self

  1. Wayside Artist says:

    Once again I agree with Pretty. That said, I’d bet my younger self a million, if I had it, I’d probably never listen to my 30 years in the future self at any point in the time line. Sigh . . .

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Déja vu all over again would be great but it seems your lives haven’t been all that bad 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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