Posted in Friendship

I Peaked Early by Ginger Keller Gannaway

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I Peaked Early

by Ginger Keller Gannaway

As far as looks go, I peaked at age 3.  Some people begin their lives as goofy-looking babies who resemble Winston Churchill or Dick Cheney!  Then these unattractive babes grow to be beautiful, model-level men and women.  For me, reverse that transformation.

I was a C-section baby, and my momma always told me, “You were a perfect baby!  So gorgeous!”  And my first photos do have that happy, healthy, Gerber baby quality.  My favorite early picture of myself was at age 3.  I’m seated on a tricycle and I’m the best-dressed I have ever been!  I’m wearing a simple yet elegant, sexy-short, red and white sun dress with sleeveless tie straps with the cutest bow peeking from the back.  (Even my trike’s handlebars match the red of the dress).  My hair is also the best it has ever been: chic-short, light brown with golden natural highlights and that ultra-cool wave (not quite a waterfall) swoop atop my head.  I confidently show straight white teeth and my perfect complexion glows.

Of course, I doubt I’m even able to ride that tricycle, but just like the Sports Illustrated swimsuit model posed on a gleaming surf board, who cares? That lil sun dress, that sporty hair-do, that carefree smile proclaim my best looking days!

Now at the just-turned age of 60, I’m going thru old photos of myself: my 7-year-old long, tangled hair look, my high school mullet-look closely followed by my unfortunate-perm look, my 28 year old short-hair-now-that-I-have-a-baby look, my 36 year old I-have-three-boys-who-cares look, and my 40’s “Oh, my word, I’m a teacher on the verge of wearing jumpers with apple & book appliqués” look.  Then my 50’s look had a tinge of desperation with the bad home-dyed hair look interspersed with this-month-I-paid-for-a-hairdresser look.

And as I sift through shoe boxes, Kodak envelopes, and photo albums from my last 6 decades, I come upon my peak period – age 3.  And seeing that stylish girl dressed in red and white confidently smile at me, I fondly smile back.


I grew up as a crooked girl who dealt with a mild case of cerebral palsy. In a small Cajun town during the 1960s, I relied on my little sisters' support and energy to give me confidence and our grandma's movie theater to help me escape when life's "pas bon" moments overwhelmed me.

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