Easy on the Eyes(101)

By: Jane Porter

And that’s when I’m all his, completely, not just the broken pieces of me, but the whole heart, soul, and funny bone. Michael knows how to make me laugh and hope and believe in all the things I had stopped believing in. Best of all, he loves me, the real me, not just the pretty face on TV.

I lean forward and kiss him, and just like before, once I start I can’t stop. I’m just happy, so happy.

“I love you,” I whisper against his mouth, and it crosses my mind that I am complete and content. I have all I could want and more. Because youth is fleeting and beauty does fade, but the one part of us that never ages is our heart.

I don’t need to be glossy and flawless. I don’t need a pretty face. I just need my heart. It’s a good heart, a beautiful heart, and it’s a fighter. It knows how to forgive and knows when to make a stand, and most of all, it knows how to love.


Love is the real answer. Love is everything.

About the Author

I imagine God blessing me as a baby much the way the three fairy godmothers blessed the infant princess in Sleeping Beauty. I see God peering over my crib and, after much thought, bestowing on me three special gifts: humor, optimism, and tenacity. Of these three, He gave tenacity in the greatest abundance.

At nine I was tested by a prominent foundation that measures skills and aptitudes. Because they weren’t used to measuring children my age, I came up lacking in vocabulary, and my test results showed that I lacked finger dexterity as well. I would never be a concert pianist. I would probably also struggle to thread the eye of a needle. But I did score off the charts in one area, and that was foresight.

Foresight meant that I could work for long periods of time to achieve a goal. Foresight meant that I could work alone for long periods of time. Foresight meant I didn’t give up easily.

I suppose in the world of skills and gifts, there are more glamorous gifts, but industriousness— and that good old gift of tenacity— has helped me achieve the seemingly impossible. I didn’t know any novelists growing up. I didn’t know that I could publish. I just knew I loved books and stories, and I had to try to write them, too.

When people ask me today for writing tips or insights into my success, I say, never give up. Don’t accept defeat. And be willing to keep learning.

This mantra became my personal mantra while writing Easy on the Eyes. This book challenged me at every turn. I spent four months writing from 8 a.m. until 10 p.m. and then another two months tearing it apart and trying it again. And then another month attacking it yet again. And then again even in the copyediting stage.

In contrast, Mrs. Perfect rolled from my fingertips. The writing was smooth, taut, dreamlike, whereas writing Easy on the Eyes felt like open-heart surgery without anesthesia.

In this new novel, I had to work, dig deep, struggle for the story. And for the first time in a long time I felt like a writer, not an author. Writing became something active and alive, a fierce process that required all of my talent and all of my patience and all of my skill. Easy on the Eyes ended up being a gift. I rediscovered how much I love a good challenge and how even the most difficult work becomes rewarding if you keep a sense of humor and remain hopeful (there are those other gifts!).

The great thing about being forty-five instead of thirty-five or twenty-five is that I don’t have to be perfect, and I don’t have to know everything, and I don’t have to get it right the first time, or all the time. I just have to try. And I just have to be myself.

In the five years I’ve written for 5 Spot, I’ve grown to not just like myself, but love myself. I love even all the bad stuff about me, the negatives like pride, and temper, vanity, willfulness, and ambition, because without the bad, I wouldn’t have the good, and the good is very good.

Easy on the Eyes reminded me that I still have a few goals and dreams left. I want to be allowed to age gracefully. I want to be valuable even with wrinkles and extra padding. I want to be loved even though I’ll always be flawed. And I want to keep counting my blessings.

Humor, optimism, tenacity.

Especially tenacity. Because as I’ve learned, as long as we don’t quit, we don’t fail.

5 Steps to Ageless Beauty

1 Make Your Hair Look Great

Play your hair up with a good cut and color and have fun. You don’t have to cut your hair off after forty. Long hair is gorgeous at any age.

2 Softer Makeup

A lighter lipstick is more flattering as we hit our forties and beyond. Darker lip colors tend to age. Discover how softer, lighter colors can light up the face.

3 Own Your Style

Don’t chase trends. Develop your own style and make it work for you. We’re big girls now. We don’t have to play follow the leader.

4 Go for a Great Fit

A perfect fit always flatters, and well-tailored clothes look gorgeous no matter the price.

5 Be Happy

There’s nothing more beautiful than a woman who smiles. Enjoy being you!