It has taken half a century for me to express gratitude to you. All of these years, I told you you were not good enough, a backward glance, knit together with a thin frown, never a smile, or a nod of affirmation. And yet, in spite of all this, you’ve never let me down. When I needed to rest my weary feet, you provided a place to sit. You carried me up nearly 1000 steps to Machu Picchu, supported me all the way up Masada in the Judean desert, kicked my students’ asses for me in all those spin classes. You never betrayed me, and yet, until now, I’ve not expressed gratitude. I didn’t accept you as you are. I am sorry.

At the beach today, there was a young woman with an ass of perfection. Yet, as she tip toed toward the ocean, she walked so carefully so as not to displace anything, every few steps tugging her bathing suit down to cover her beautiful behind.

You, my dear ass, have lost some of the elastin and collagen of our youth. You will never look like the perfect one on that girl. But I love you. So this time, I bought a bikini that exposes half of you. There is not enough fabric to pull down over this behind. So, I stroll down to the water’s edge, exposing most of you for all to see. The caress of the ocean air against your cheeks surprises me with pleasure. And for the first time, I don’t care if you shake a little with each heel strike, or that you don’t ride as high as you once did, or that there are two folds rather than one, smiling creases telling time. You are perfect as you are, my friend. Thank you for always loving me, even when I didn’t love you.

Today, we lie on the warm sand together, you looking up at the sky, me dosing on arm pillows, and for the first time, the warmth of the golden rays smile kindly upon you, and I am glad. Finally, whole heartedly, I allow the sun to kiss you, my dear ass.