Facebook recently introduced the concept of “Timeline” for our online profiles… an attempt to capture a view into who we are based on all that we have done, all we share, what we say and who we say it to, our experiences, our joys, the pain we feel sometimes and the irritations that bother us… a picture of who we are, built up over our walk through the years.
An interesting concept for sure.
But we already have a version of “Timeline” built into us don’t we? … a subtler version for sure, but so much more powerful ! And it is a version that we cannot “hide” things on…
I think of it as traces on our faces… the lines that time, and the way we have lived it, etches on our face.
The laughter lines from all those moments of mirth – the giggles with friends from childhood; the mischievous guffaws at anything and everything during those irreverent college years; moments of fun and cheer at so many points of life… the luckiest of us, those whose eyes hold the memory of recent laughter, who let frequent smiles crinkle the corners of their eyes.
Frown lines that pucker the forehead, pull the brows together… stress, worry, anxiety, upset… written as deep as we have let it effect us, the number of times we have given into it.
The weathering of age. And of weather… the sun, the wind, the places we live in. The ravages of illness. And those of neglect. The glow of health. And that of wealth (viva la salons!). The mellowness, or cynicism, we allow experience to add.
The “happy” mouth or the “sulky” one – lines the face gets used to following… that get left behind, as clear as well trodden trails. Lips that twitch to curve up.
The sheer comfort of a glance that is steady and open. And the darting shiftiness eyes acquire when you get them too used to hiding thought, to avoiding other eyes. Eyes that droop with melancholy and those that glow with joy. Eyes, glassy with disinterest and those that sparkle with the excitement of life. Peaceful eyes. Hooded eyes. Eyes… the window to so much of what is, and what has been.
We worry so much about what our online profile reveals, what privacy settings we can activate, what do we show on and who do we allow to see it… what of our face? – the richest story of how we have lived, what we think – its every line, a map of the soul. What attention does that “timeline” merit?